GOP Primary Flashpoint: Bashaw Versus Serrano

When Donald Trump endorsed Christine Serrano Glassner for U.S. Senate, he said her main opponent, Curtis Bashaw, was a Christie guy.

Relations between Trump and the former governor – once quite chummy – have been strained of late. So you can understand Trump’s sentiments.

But how about Bashaw? Is he a “Christie person?”

“Well, I’m Curtis Bashaw and I’ve supported a lot of people through the years,” Bashaw said in an interview broadcast Monday night.

Bashaw went on to say that Christie has been a “major figure in our state” and that he’s known him since Christie was a freeholder.

That dates back about 30 years. Christie was on the Morris County freeholder board from 1995 through 1997.

Bashaw said he sees the one-time governor occasionally, but that he has not discussed his Senate campaign with Christie.

Bashaw, a hotel and inn operator from Cape May, commented in a Meet the Candidates’ forum sponsored by the NJ Globe, On New Jersey and the Rebovich Institute at Rider University.

A debate among what were then three candidates had been scheduled for early April, but one of the three, Alex Zdan, dropped out and endorsed Bashaw.

After that event, Bashaw backed out of a one-on-one debate with Serrano Glassner, saying it would be divisive and Republicans should stand united. He made a similar point Monday night.

As he noted, Bashaw has racked up a majority of county committee endorsements from around the state. He said voters must remember that the “prize” is winning the seat this fall, which New Jersey Republicans have not done in more than 50 years. Bashaw said he’s the best candidate to do that.

Still, the Trump endorsement certainly has spiced things up a bit.

Besides highlighting Trump’s selection, a recent Serrano Glassner ad hits Bashaw for donating to “radical Democrats.”  Cory Booker is specifically mentioned.

Bashaw suggested that donating to a wide range of politicians is what business-people do, noting that in the past, Trump has donated to the likes of Hillary Clinton and Chuck Schumer. He also said one of those “Democrats” he has donated to was Jeff Van Drew, who is now a Republican

More broadly, Bashaw’s views on issues seemed to hug the middle lane.

On abortion, he said he supported the Dobbs decision returning the matter to the states. However, he does not think the federal government should dictate abortion policy and would be opposed to a federal ban.

On Ukraine, Bashaw said the U.S. must protect democracy and its friends, but he also started talking about the U.S. border.

The politics here is easy to see. While the Republican party nationally has been split over more aid for Ukraine, protecting the border is a core GOP issue.

Bashaw also talked about public schools keeping secrets from parents. This brings us into the ongoing debate about curriculum, books and what gets taught in schools. This is a national issue, but in truth, the U.S. Senate has no direct control over local education.

Bashaw is openly gay.

So a natural observation was Republican opposition to gays, at least in some quarters.

Bashaw said marriage equality is “settled law” and that he’s not losing sleep over its future.

“We try to put people in boxes too much,” he said, adding, “I think the Republican Party is becoming a bigger and bigger tent.”

 

 

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11 responses to “GOP Primary Flashpoint: Bashaw Versus Serrano”

  1. In this year’s GOP primary, Bashaw donated to Chris Christie. That would make him a Christie guy! Conservative Republicans follow the Judea/Christian ethic and haven’t left that ethic and still believe in Traditional marriage of one man – one woman. Not two men married as in the case of Bashaw.

  2. What ever happened to the Big Tent Tom Kean Sr. used to talk about? I am not seeing that in Henry above. But I am seeing it in Bashaw, and that will make the GOP ticket even stronger in November.

  3. LOL! A so-called big tent which goes against Judeo/Christian ethics is for the Democrats where anything goes.

  4. The fact that Bashaw wouldn’t debate Serrano Glassier because it would be ‘divisive’ for the Republican Party is exactly the word play the Uniparty uses. The people vote, not the county parties. The people need to know which one of you to vote for, that’s how a debate separates (I guess ‘divides’) candidates. Bashaw will be more of the same in DC!

  5. Mr. Bashaw came to Point Pleasant Beach to address our Republican Club.
    He took many questions from the audience and did an excellent job outlining his views on many issues.
    As a fellow entrepreneur…
    I was impressed by his business accomplishments and experience in bringing different groups together to build a business.

  6. Trump endorsed Serrano that should be the final word.
    GOP pushing another loser no one wants ignoring our conservative values!
    Too many RINOS. And they wonder why the Democrats win.
    Refusing to debate Serrano means afraid she can win.

  7. I agree with Mary F. Debates give the voters a chance to hear the candidates’ views and positions on today’s important issues. Bashaw didn’t want us to have that opportunity. He’s on most GOP county lines, so no doubt he’s hoping that’ll be enough to win him the primary.

  8. Washington wrote, “In a government based upon the will of the people it is vital that the opinion of the people be informed and knowledgeable.”
    Do not hide behind the go to phrase, “it is too divisive.” Tammy Murphy used the same line when dropping out of the Senate race.
    An element of “Protecting Democracy” is educating, “We the People.” Debate.

  9. I wonder does the GOP care more about purity or about winning? Last time I checked, NJ was a Blue state. I still believe that the right Republican could win a state wide election, but I am confident that the state GOP is too caught up in purity politics to ever nominate someone who has a chance.

    So go ahead, nominate a MAGA candidate, and hand Kim the seat.

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