It’s official. The most reliable bloc of Democratic voters in Monmouth County has been shut out of their party’s biggest-ever event hereabouts: today’s scheduled appearance by resident Obama at the PNC Arts Center in Holmdel.
And the snub comes from the re-election campaign of Gov. Jon Corzine, who was feted and fawned over by the party faithful twice in recent weeks.
Mayor Pasquale Menna tells redbankgreen today that there’s “no change” in his quest to get two busloads of borough Democrats past the gates of the arts center for Obama’s speech, scheduled for 3:15p.
No change as in: not likely to happen.
Just two weeks ago, Menna was spreading word among local Democrats that he had 100 tickets to give away for Obama’s appearance on behalf of Corzine, then scheduled to take place at a 5,000-seat facility in New Brunswick.
But somehow, in the process of Corzine’s people switching the president’s appearance to the 17,500-seat open-air arts center less than a dozen miles from Red Bank, Menna’s passes evaporated.
Not enough chairs, he was told.
Sounding somber, Hizzoner tells us that his contingent isn’t alone. He says Asbury Park Mayor Ed Johnson was also shut out.
“It’s disappointing, but it doesn’t detract from my support for the governor or for the president,” Menna said.
And what of the 100 people who’d hoped to be part of the Lovefest in the Local Lanes?
“They’re immensely disappointed,” he said. “We’ve been told we’ll have first dibs on something else in the future. What that means, I have no idea.”
Menna tells us that Councilman Ed Zipprich will be in attendance at the event, via his connections at Democracy for America, a Burlington, Vt.-based political action committee founded by former Vermont governor and presidential candidate Howard Dean.