On the heels of a snazzy jazz soundtrack conference call intro, Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno this afternoon whisked away the tarp over Building a Better NJ Together, a new registered 501(c)4 political organization based in Ocean.
As she positions herself for a statewide run to succeed the sitting governor, the prospective 2017 Republican candidate is the honorary chair of what she described as a think tank. Former Governor Chris Christie political minder and 2012 reelection campaign manager Bill Stepien will serve as executive director of the organization. Jerry Langer, chief commercial officer of Langer Industries, is intimately involved with the running of the new outfit, as are real estate attorney Jennifer Krimko and Lisa Miller of the D.C.-based Blueprint Communications, a former New Jersey Republican State Committee staffer.
“I very much appreciate the confidence to be a part [of Building a Better NJ Together]. I look forward to working with the lieutenant governor,” Stepien said on the call before introducing Guadagno.
“Why can’t government get out of our way and out of our wallets?” the LG wondered aloud. “It can, it should, and it will, and that’s what Building a Better NJ Together is all about.”
Guadagno channeled a Stack-like storyline when she professed to being the kind of public servant who gives cellphone access top practically everyone she meets.
But mostly she sounded Reagan-like organ chords
“Government is not the solution, it’s the problem,” Guadagno said. “The solutions will come not from Trenton but from us. While politicians may spend time talking to us they don’t spend enough time listening; answering their cellphones, in other words.”
Ocean County Republican Chairman George Gilmore stepped up on the conference call and asked Guadagno if there was anything he could do to help.
“I’m going to be reaching out to anyone on this call to talk to you directly about ideas,” she said. “…If you don’t have my cellphone, that’s pretty hard to believe. You need you to get everyone in your county to sign up. That’s the way new jersey is going to be better.”
While she thanked Gilmore for the question, Guadagno eschewed more impromptu input or off script potential when she declared that she didn’t want to take up anyone else’s time just before the conference call abruptly ended.