They may remain bracketed together on the ballot, but LD38 Republican challenger Mark DiPisa doesn’t want to be in the same room as his former running mate, who authored a satirical screed ten years ago only to have the offensive piece boomerang on him in a competitive election season and slice him away from a former friend.
In part at the urging of a disgusted DiPisa, Anthony Cappola exited the race in the aftermath of his noxious tome coming to light, then wobbled back into view when the Republican Party decided against forking over the cash necessary to change the ballots.
Cappola and DiPisa joined forces on the GOP ticket in a much-watched effort to relieve Assemblymen Tim Eustace and Joe Lagana of their seats of power.
Now, the Republicans appear locked in their own internecine dogfight.
Following the announcement by the League of Women Voters that they will allow Cappola to participate in their candidate forum, DiPisa bailed rather than sit in proximity to his wounded ex-running mate.
“When I heard about the contents of Anthony Cappola’s book I was the first person to demand his resignation and denounce his racist, bigoted and offensive publication,” DiPisa said. “He is not a legitimate candidate in this race and I refuse to validate his candidacy by sharing the stage with him. Now its up to Eustace and Lagana to stand by the thousands they are spending on television and mail attacking Cappola. I ask them join me in refusing to take part in a forum that recognizes a racist who sought profit from his hate filled comments. Its impossible to have a productive dialogue about our future with someone whose disgraceful comments show he is clearly living in the past.”
In an email to PolitickerNJ, Cappola responded to DiPisa’s comment.
“He’s entitled to his opinions & decisions,” he said of his former running mate. “I’m looking forward to the event with or without him.”