Dem Fifth Column makes its move at Sussex Convention


It is not news that the Democrat Party has had a hard time making inroads in Sussex County. Gary Chiusano beat the last Democrat Freeholder a decade ago and the Democrats big break in 2007 was squashed by the “Real Conservative Team” of Steve Oroho, Alison McHose, Gary Chiusano, Hal Wirths, and Jeff Parrott.

2007 was the year the Democrats had everything going for them: The Republican Party “brand” was in the tank, “Clean Elections” gave them matching funds dollar for dollar with the Republicans, and two state legislative seats (Senate and Assembly) were open, along with a Freeholder seat. The result was a wipe out right down the ballot, with longtime local Democrats losing their elected positions due to a Republican surge in turnout.

Since then, the Democrats have used a different approach: Some of them become Republicans. Then, as Republicans, they champion liberal causes and positions that “normalize” those positions with Republican voters. In this way, what the Democrats’ campaigns offer does not differ from what the Republicans are doing. Personality will matter more than party and eventually, Democrats will start being elected again.

The Democrats’ play was acted out on Saturday at the convention called to fill the vacancy left when Gary Chiusano resigned from the Assembly. Chiusano had resigned earlier this the month after being nominated by Governor Chris Christie and confirmed by the State Senate to serve as Sussex County’s new Surrogate.

Under New Jersey law, the vacancy is filled by the members of the county committee of the party of the incumbent vacating the seat. Gary Chiusano is a Republican, so that meant the Republican county committee members of the 24th District (all Sussex County, eleven towns in Warren County, and one in Morris County) got to select the new Assemblyman.

Notice of the meeting was given by the GOP Chairmen (one, Ailish Hambel of Sussex County, is a chairwoman) of the three counties that make up the 24th District. Because the district had never had a convention to fill a vacancy since redistricting, the three chairmen met and adopted rules that would serve until the full convention could convene.

The rules they adopted were the same used in the 2009 convention for District 23, which included all of Warren County then. Those rules called for prospective candidates to collect the signatures of 20 county committee members out of the more than 400 eligible to vote. Only one candidate complied with the rules, Parker Space, the eventual winner.

Another candidate, Mark Quick, collected 14 signatures, while another, Bader Qarmout, told at least a half dozen party officials that he had collected 23 signatures, but when the time came to turn them in he failed to have any.

This is where the clever Democrats come in. A Democrat campaign operative from Hudson County attempted to create a firestorm against the rules in order to delegitimize whichever Republican won the convention. Of course, on the day of the convention, the chairman of the convention (Warren County GOP Chairman Doug Steinhardt) was quite happy to dispense with the “acting” rules and adopt the rules as amended by the whole convention. There was no fuss at all and, in fact, Parker Space made the motion to change them.

But everyone there could see that some at the convention were ready for a fight. One ally of the Hudson County operative had been seething over the “unfair” rules and left unfulfilled, having never achieved the anticipated climax. The Democrats’ plan, to dupe a few Republicans into creating a false “controversy” and divide the GOP, had failed.

Enter Bader Qarmout.

Qarmout had served notice with the county chairmen and other Republican officials that he had collected 23 signatures but, instead of turning them in, he sent out an email two days before the convention that complained about the process. Whether he was a dupe or whether he knew he was playing the Democrats’ game, nobody but Qarmout can say.

After the “controversy” of the rules turned out to be a myth, the liberal operatives used their back-up “controversy”: The appointment of Gary Chiusano as Surrogate.

Last December, when Sussex Surrogate Nancy Fitzgibbons retired, Assemblyman Gary Chiusano had made it plain that he wanted to run for the position. Chiusano’s background and his fiduciary accreditation in banking and finance make him superbly qualified for the job. But that did not stop liberals and their allies from claiming that only a lawyer could do the job (even though it has never been held by a lawyer).

As with their manufactured rules “controversy”, the left started banging on about how “the fix was in” and they predicted that Chiusano would never be confirmed by the Democrat-controlled State Senate. Of course, Gary Chiusano was nominated by Governor Christie and confirmed by the full Senate and that was that. Nevertheless, the liberals have found a candidate to run against Chiusano in the Republican primary and are set to announce a second candidate who will challenge him in the general election as a Democrat.

Chiusano is a big part of the Hometown Conservative Team, led by Senator Steve Oroho and Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose. At Saturday’s convention, McHose and Oroho had nominated and seconded the nomination of Parker Space. Why not give them a black eye, the liberals thought.

And so the left got to work trying to turn the anger they had generated about the rules into votes against Parker Space. This failed too, but not before those present were treated to a speech by Bader Qarmout in which he forgot that he wasn’t running against Joe Kyrillos anymore and promised that he would fight for them “in Washington“.

So the left was put out on Saturday but we must remain on guard because they will try again.

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  1. wendy Molner says:

    If you are referencing Glenn you need to know, he served Sussex County with distinction and was fiscally conservative with the County budget. He continues public service on the Sussex Community College Board. No need to trash people just because they personally back a different candidate. That is our choice as Americans.

    Rob, I do not know you personally, but I can’t understand why you feel you need to involve yourself in Sussex business at all. Why? You do not live or work in Sussex County. What is at risk here for you? I don’t get it.

    I do not think you will find one elected official that will publically agree with you (if) you are referencing Freeholder Vetrano.

  2. Wendy Molner says:


    I thought I was voicing my “personal” opinion of what happens in Sussex County. I am surprised you let posters who hide behi9nd fake names post such vile comments. I will not be back to visit this site again.

    Very nasty poster who obviously has issues, and must call people names.

    Sticks and stones…..

  3. Rob Eichmann says:


    As far as I know, what you posted is your personal opinion, such that it may be.

    I don’t know who the other commenter is, just as I don’t know who you are. As long as comments follow the CNJ commenting policy, they are allowed.

    As for your initial assertion about Sussex County and this web site reporting on the goings on/shenanigans that happen there, if you are a conservative you would understand the importance of it. Since you aren’t appreciative of open, transparent, and good government but rather seem to be supportive of rising taxes and mismanagement of taxpayer dollars one must assume that you are connected to those that want bad government to continue.

    As for where I live, that is public record. What is your point?

  4. truther says:

    I don’t recall wendy being upset when bader sent a couple of thugs from sussex county down to his home to try to intimidate the editor of cnj.

  5. Sigmund Halperstein says:

    Eichmann is a wholly owned subsidiary of Ppallatucci and DuHame.

    He is a CC mouthpiece.


  6. weeble says:

    So you support Barbara Buono over Chris Christie? Must be another public employee union dirtbag.

  7. Mr. Mundelbaum says:

    So what will Mark Quick and Bader Qarmout do about this? Will they run together as a team in the primary against Parker Space and McHose, on the same line as Seth Grossman who stands to get a big vote in that district? Or will they go third party in the general election, possibly as Libertarians or Conservatives? We shall all wait with bated breath.

  8. bader hater says:

    Actually read this:

    Quick, who announced earlier this month that he’d also seek the party’s nomination to run for the seat in November, said Saturday’s convention presented a new set of circumstances.

    In an effort to make sure Space defeats Qarmout or any other challenger in the party’s June primary, Quick said he’s pulling out of the race altogether, adding that to do otherwise would be “irresponsible.”

    Quick said he feels Qarmout was at the convention “for all the wrong reasons” and any votes he may have received would be more justly allocated to Space.

  9. weeble says:

    Don’t you read the papers? Quick announced he isn’t running. He supports Space. They are both farmers.

    Seth will get a vote but not a “big vote”. Not too many Republicans who are pro-choice like Seth is.

  10. Mark D Quick says:

    While many people see me run campaigns and may disagree with my choices. I have in my efforts promoted issues and values I deeply believe in. Bader Qarmout has in his efforts to gain office done nothing but lie and back stab people. My fight against illegal aliens and agenda21 are not something I take lightly.
    While trying to get Sustainable NJ and other socialist programs stopped Mr Bader’s people including RoseAnn Salinitri and others looked to get rid of me and stop this fight. I took off last year because of adding a wonderful baby girl to the family.
    We named her Mae Helen. My family means everything to me and my children need a future that my ancestors fought for. I served in the US Marine Corps from 1982-85 with 3rd bn 8th Marines. While in the Marine Corps. I watched what was left of 1st bn 8th Marines come home from Beruit… I had a daughter serve in Iraq from a National Gaurd Unit from Pa.
    My family’s roots go back to the 1630’s here in Warren and Sussex County. My great great uncle Tom Quick is a local hero of the French and Indian Wars and the American War of Independence. The people back then looked upon Tom as the deffender of there homes, wives and children. When King Georges soldier arrest Tom the Sussex sheriff let him go.
    I made a promise to never do anything to harm my local communities. I have never taken this promise with a grain of salt. This year I wanted to run a campaign respectfully addressing issues and setting a mandate on issues.
    Given Bader and his friends only interest is to obtain power not for the people, I had to honestly do the right thing and I will continue to do so by making sure Mr. Qarmout does not get any more of a foot hold in my local area. His actions are a direct threat to my efforts for the people of Warren and Sussex County. All the under or unemployed contruction workers and others his policies represent do nothing but slap us in the face… His idea for the cost of a cup of coffee he wants Illegal Aliens made legal….. How about the injuries and lost money to my family because our laws are not enforced? I wonder if Mr Qarmout would give me the 8-900 a week I have lost over the past 5 years… Repair my body or repay the others who lost their jobs…. A slum lord and slave wage employer..

  11. truther says:

    I’m waiting for the threats from the corrupt PAC that even the newspaper is afraid of.

  12. Mark D Quick says:

    While not always easy sometimes one must put the issues first. I had a choice take a chance and get Bader who has by his proxy tried to stop my fight against Agenda21 and supports Amnesty for Illegal Aliens or just toss myself under the bus….
    Bader is a complete bucket of slime and the convention showed him for who he really is….