The Inglesino Angle


The last time the chairmanship of the Morris County Republican Committee came around, Ron DeFilippis won by four votes over Rob Zwigard.

That was 18 months ago, but time hasn’t healed a pronounced split in the party.

You want proof?

Just a few weeks ago, winning freeholder candidate Tom Mastrangelo publicly asked all office holders in the party to resign.

That prompted Peter King, the party counsel, to write a letter of his own, trashing Mastrangelo. Needless to say, neither King nor any other party officer resigned.

Over the last few weeks, it surfaced that John Inglesino may seek the chairman’s post when the seat comes up next June.

For the record, Inglesino says he’s “mulling it over.”

He would be an interesting candidate.

Inglesino has been politically active in the county for about three decades as a mayor in Rockaway Township and a freeholder. He also has run unsuccessfully for the Assembly in District 25. More than that, Inglesino has served as municipal attorney, most prominently in Parsippany where Democrats made him a campaign issue in 2017. It proved to be good strategy as Democrat Michael Soriano won the mayor’s seat.

DeFilippis remains party chairman, but he stepped aside last month for health reasons. That put the party in control of vice-chair Laura Ali.

Who knows what will happen in June, but the county Republican committee has pointed to a number of election successes this year – namely holding onto strenuously contested Assembly seats in Districts 25 and 26. Republicans also stopped Democratic attempts to seize control of Parsippany and to take complete control of Morris Township.

Yet, on the other hand, detractors can point to continuing GOP losses in Chatham Borough and Chatham Township, two towns that were once dependable Republican bastions.

Time moves quickly and mid-June will be here soon enough. But in the immediate future, it’s time to celebrate the holidays. Morris Republicans will hold their annual “Toys for Tots” breakfast Saturday at party headquarters in Parsippany, Attendees are asked to donate an unwrapped toy for the needy.

Political infighting, one presumes, will be on hiatus.

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