With New Jersey being one of only two states with off year elections, you can expect many of the big names to come through the state. While the Governor will have the President in on Thursday and the Christie campaign will have Michael Steele on Monday, Jay Webber has turned the party to a familiar name:
GOP State Committee Chairman Jay Webber confirmed Friday that Gingrich will headline a July 24 event at the home of Sal and Lisa LoBiondo, a Montville couple who are active in Republican politics.
Invitees to the private fundraiser will pay $1,000 each for a cocktail reception, $5,000 a plate for dinner.
It’s not known how many people will attend.
Webber called Gingrich “an interesting figure who has a lot of insights on current events.”
It’s probably a smart move by the new chair because Newt is one of the few names with drawing power in their party. We should keep track of all the people who come to town while Sarah Palin is turned away. Romney has been here, Steele is coming, Rudy has been prominent and Newt will be helping the effort, while Palin is quarantined from the NJ GOP. Her treatment prompted this reaction from one conservative, pointed out by Fred Snowflack:
The message of the New Jersey GOP is loud and clear: not only is Sarah Palin is not welcome here, but neither are conservative Republicans. The GOP in in this state is a pathetic simulacrum of the party of Ronald Reagan – a political Potemkin Village populated by party hacks too busy shaking the plum tree to realize the ground beneath them is giving way.
At best, her presence here would have boosted the morale of the conservative faction of the Party – if only temporarily. I?m actually relieved that the Christie campaign made its intentions known, as this will serve as a warning to Mrs. Palin to avoid this particular pit of vipers
We’ll see if Newt is able to tamp down that sentiment, because if conservatives stay home, Christie’s got problems. An interesting note, the party website has the “Evening with Newt Gingrich” listed, which is basically a private house party with a former elected official, but not the Christie/Steele tour du Jersey which involves their party standard bearer and National Chairman. Make of that what you will.