Home>Local>Bergen>Judge invalidates June race for Bergen GOP chairman, calls for new election

Bergen County GOP Chairman Jack Zisa. (Photo: Bergen County Republican Organization).

Judge invalidates June race for Bergen GOP chairman, calls for new election

By David Wildstein, December 10 2021 6:08 pm

A Superior Court Judge today overturned a June election for Bergen County Republican chairman, forcing incumbent Jack Zisa to face a new election in early next year.

Zisa had called an election for the week before the June primary.  County committee elections initially scheduled for June 2020 were postponed for two years as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

In that race, Zisa defeated Oradell GOP municipal chairman Michael Gardner by a vote of 350 to 164.

In a lawsuit filed by a Republican county committeeman, Robert Taschler, on July 19, Judge Estela De La Cruz ruled that the statute required the election to be run one week after the primary, not before.

De La Cruz also ruled that Taschler, an appointed district leader from New Milford, had standing to challenge the election.

“It is necessary that the BCRO hold a new election, De La Cruz wrote.  “It is also prudent for this court to restrain the current BCRO and its current chair and officers from making any decision or taking any action as may be undertaken by a legally formed and duly authorized board of a county patty organization and its leadership, pending a  new election.”

De La Cruz has scheduled a hearing to set a new election date on January 11, and asked both parties to discuss their proposals for the new county chair contest before the hearing.

“I do not want any surprises sprung at the January 11th conference,” she said.

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