Zisa Done as Bergen GOP Chair

Bergen County Republican Organization Chair Jack Zisa congratulated Paul Juliano on his election to the head of the county Democrats, a party he says is one of deceit and trickery and has not been serving the needs of the working people.

Can a new chair revitalize Bergen Republicans?

Jack Zisa is giving up his job as head of the party and has endorsed Jack DeLorenzo of Hasbrouck Heights as his replacement.

The last decade or so have been troubling times for Republicans in the state’s most populous county.

The GOP used to rule Bergen, but no more. Democrats hold all county offices and Republican representation is limited to two legislative districts – 39 and 40.

Critics of the current leadership point to infighting and also impotence.

While the “county line” may soon be a thing of the past – even for Republicans – the party’s recent success in this regard has not been stirring.

Frank Pallotta ran “off the line” in 2020 and 2022, winning the party’s CD-5 nomination both times.

Pallotta also has been involved in a recent skirmish with party leaders centered in his home town of Mahwah.

Here’s how he tells it in a social media post:

“We find ourselves at a critical juncture, as the core of our Republican values in Mahwah are under siege by the Bergen County Republican Organization (BCRO) and its chairman, Jack Zisa. In an unprecedented move last week, Zisa bypassed the County Committee candidate selections of our Municipal Chair, Tracey Miceli, and unilaterally chose to remove 17 dedicated Republicans from the organizational line, including 13 incumbent county committee members. For clarification, Zisa (or any chair for that matter) has never ignored this many selections by a municipal chair.”

In more blunt terms, 17 Mahwah Republicans were picked by party leaders to serve on the county committee, but Zisa did not endorse them.

Pallotta says he sees it as a “vendetta” by Zisa against him.

Besides his primary wins, Pallotta says he has successfully supported municipal candidates and Holly Schepisi’s move to the state Senate (following the death of Gerald Cardinale) over Zisa’s wishes.

This is a spat in one of 70 Bergen towns, but an in-party fight over the county committee is not the way to breed unity.

The chair election is a week after the June primary, so we’ll see if anyone challenges DeLorenzo.

But clearly, returning the Bergen GOP to some semblance of its past influence probably won’t be easy.

 

 

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2 responses to “Zisa Done as Bergen GOP Chair”

  1. The county chair election is no longer a week after the primary election. Under the current law, the reorganization meetings are tied into the election certification date and must be held after that date.

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