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Darlene Shotmeyer. (Photo: Facebook).

Shotmeyer will become GOP vice chair

Pagliughi will be retired after 20 years in the post

By David Wildstein, June 23 2021 3:08 pm

A Bergen County Republican insider is expected to become the new Republican State Committee Vice Chair when the state party reorganizes on Wednesday evening.

Darlene Shotmeyer, who was re-elected to her third term as a GOP State Committeewoman earlier this month, is slated to replace Lynda Pagliughi.

This will be the first change in the vice chair post since Pagliughi won the post in 2001.  She has served as interim state party chair several times.

Republicans will also formally elect Bob Hugin as the new state chairman tonight.

The pick traditionally goes to the winner of the gubernatorial primary.  Jack Ciattarelli endorsed Hugin two days after he won the nomination.

Hugin, the former Celgene chairman, was the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in 2018.

Democrats hurled a shot at the GOP for picking a Bergen County Republican.

“Darlene Shotmeyer is a perfect fit with Jack Ciattarelli and Bob Hugin, because just like them she’s willing to support the most extreme, dangerous and criminal elements of the Republican Party. Shotmeyer stood by and said nothing when her county party endorsed an active member of the Oath Keepers for State Assembly, a candidate for Bergen County Sheriff who is currently under indictment and perhaps most egregiously Bridgegate architect Bridget Kelly for Bergen County Clerk,” said Saily Avelenda, the executive director of the Democratic State Committee.  “If this is the kind of judgement she brought to her leadership position with the Bergen Republicans, Darlene Shotmeyer will fit in great with the Ciattarelli team.”

Hunterdon County Commissioner Shaun Van Doren was elected treasurer and Irene Kim Asbury was re-elected secretary.

Shotmeyer won the post from Bergen in 2013, following the death of Eleonore Nissley, a legendary GOP insider and longtime state committeewoman.

In 2016, Shotmeyer launched a bid for Republican National Committeewoman against incumbent Virginia Haines but dropped out before the vote.  Shotmeyer was part of a group of Gov. Chris Christie’s supporters who were feuding with then-Ocean County GOP Chairman George Gilmore at the time.

Last December, Shotmeyer supported Michael Lavery for state chair in a close race against Hugin.

This story was updated at 5:36 PM with comment from Avelenda, and at 7:35 PM. 

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