Rumored as a 2017 gubernatorial prospect, Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli (R-16) responded today to a query from PolitickerNJ regarding his thoughts on the 2015 legislative elections.
“Democrats did a very god job leveraging one of their greatest assets – special interest money,” said Ciattarelli. “Republicans could not leverage what used to be their greatest asset – Chris Christie. Having said that, we’re oversimplifying things if we attribute Democrats’ success to special interest money and Republicans’ failure on the Governor. Each of the Assembly races in the five legislative districts that are competitive – 1, 2, 11, 16 and 38 – were all very unique and winnable by either party, with or without the influence of special interest money and the Governor.
“In the future, Republican candidates need to do a better job of motivating Republicans and appealing to Independents and Democrats. You accomplish that with solutions that transcend partisan politics.”
PolitickerNJ asked Ciattarelli outright if he intends to rule out a 2017 gubernatorial bid.
“It’s inappropriate to comment on 2017 prior to all the provisional ballots being counted and any possible recount in the 16th District,” said the Hillsborough assemblyman, in a nod to the dangling condition of his running mate, Assemblywoman Donna Simon (r-16), who unofficially trails her Democratic challenger by 61 votes.
“We owe it to the citizens of the district to keep our focus where it belongs right now – on an election outcome that is beyond any doubt,” Ciattarelli added.