Ghassali Campaign Goes on Hiatus in CD5


The coronavirus has sidelined – at least temporarily – the congressional campaign of Republican Mike Ghassali in the Fifth District.

In a recent campaign post, Ghassali said the public job he has now – mayor of Montvale – must take precedent.

Here is part of his post.

“I took the oath to protect and serve my community as a mayor. It would be utterly irresponsible in times like this to do anything else but to fulfill my obligation.”

He added that he has put his campaign staff and volunteers “on hold while we go through these difficult times.”

A companion post stressed that he is still in the race, noting that he already has filed nominating petitions. The deadline is Monday.

This normally is done with the secretary of state’s office or with county clerks, but is now being done online.

Ghassali has been considered one of the three top candidates to get the GOP nod to challenge Democrat Josh Gottheimer this fall. The others are Frank Pallotta and John McCann, who ran in 2018.

Bergen County Republicans had planned to endorse a candidate at a convention earlier this week, but that was shelved because of the pandemic.

Putting a campaign “on hold” for whatever reason is never a good sign.

Then again, there isn’t much campaigning going on these days anyway.

So, does it even make a difference?

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