TOMS RIVER – The Ocean County Republican Organization is screening candidates for the 2021 election, and current County Commissioner Joseph Vicari is screening for the nod for governor.
The screening process is a step in determining who the influential GOP group will endorse in the primary election. They will have the party line on the ballot.
Current County Commissioner (formerly called Freeholder) Joseph Vicari will be screened for the governor spot. He is up against Jack Ciattarelli, Hirsh Singh, Brian Levine, and Joseph Rullo.
The screening will take place on February 6. The screening committee will then make recommendations. The County Convention, held in March, will host a vote to endorse candidates.
There are several other campaigns in the works.
Commissioner Gary Quinn is up for re-election. Commissioner Gerry Little announced his retirement and a plethora of candidates have stepped up, asking to be screened. They include:
- John Bacchione, Berkeley Councilman
- Bobbie Jo Crea, Little Egg Harbor Mayor
- Lawrence Cuneo, Pine Beach Mayor
- Peter Curatolo, Lacey Mayor
- Shawn Denning, Waretown
- Victor Finamore, Brick
- Lisa Hodgson-Henson, Surf City
- Andrew Kern, Jackson Council President
- Sharon McKenna, Stafford
- Stephen Reid, Point Pleasant Beach
- Michael A. Thulen, Sr., Brick
- Rolf J. Weber, Island Heights Councilman
- Rory Wells, Manchester
The GOP is expected to endorse the incumbents in all the Senate and Assembly races.