Musella Kicks off Mayoral Campaign

PARSIPPANY- On the surface, it’s hard to discern anything so awful about this town of more than 55,000  – the largest in Morris County.

But there’s always something beneath the surface – especially when it comes to politics.

And on the Saturday before the Fourth of July, Councilman Justin Musella had that in mind when he launched plans to run for mayor in 2025.

The township is over-taxed, is too buddy-buddy with developers and runs town hall like a private club.

The last allegation in truth is a bit flimsy. Just about every administration regardless of political persuasion is accused of cronyism.

But the other two points are more substantive.

It was Musella, you recall, who organized a massive protest against township endorsed PILOT agreements.

The public – generally speaking – does not like major developments, so opposing PILOTs makes sense politically. And also aesthetically.

The PILOTs were approved, but this episode showed Musella’s ability to organize.

Musella’s announcement took place in the parking lot outside Morris County Republican headquarters before about 150 people. Jon Bramnick, a 2025 gubernatorial candidate, was on hand but did not speak.

Musella said the date – just before July 4 – was symbolic. He wants to bring more “freedom” and limited government to Parsippany.

Did Thomas Jefferson ever speak in a parking lot? Perhaps not, but it’s the thought that counts.

Musella, his supporters said, would bring “freshness” to town government.

It’s worth mentioning here that Musella will be presumably challenging Republican Mayor Jamie Barberio in next year’s primary. Republicans, in fact, control the council 4-1.

The theme of the event was that Republicans have lost their way. Musella said that when he ran with fellow Republicans for council, all opposed high taxes and overdevelopment.

But then he got to the council.

“Unfortunately I found myself alone because I was the only one who meant it,” he said.

Musella aims to bring back “core” Republican principles. What those are can be subject to debate, but it’s worth noting that Parsippany is not a “red” town.

It’s quite “purple.” A Democrat was elected to the council last year and Joe Biden carried the town in 2020.

But those debates are down the road.

It’s still a year away. But a mayoral primary in the county’s largest town is going to be fun to follow.


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One response to “Musella Kicks off Mayoral Campaign”

  1. A refreshing and invigorating breeze blew into Parsippany on a sultry summer afternoon. Unlike the heated and stifling rhetoric that all too frequently spews forth from the office of Parsippany Mayor Barberio, Councilman Musella’s announcement that he is running for Mayor promises that Parsippany has better days ahead.
    Speaking to the aspirations of residents with families and seniors on fixed incomes, Justin told out of town developers and their greedy attorneys that from now on, Parsippany will be about the residents and not about the ill-gotten gains offered up by the compliant Mayor Barberio and Mr. Paul Carifi and Mr. Frank Neglia – the Mayor’s two subservient Council cronies.
    Justin Musella offers calm, rational and innovative leadership.
    How refreshing and invigorating that will be .

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