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Bergen County Republican Chairman Jack Zisa.

Lawsuit filed challenging Bergen GOP leadership race

By David Wildstein, July 22 2021 5:40 pm

A Bergen County Republican committeeman has filed a lawsuit alleging that the county GOP organization violated state law by holding an election for county chairman before the June primary election.

Robert Taschler, a longtime GOP leader from New Milford, said the June 1 contest – one week before the primary — also violated the Bergen County Republican Organization bylaws.

Incumbent Jack Zisa, a former Hackensack mayor, defeated Oradell Republican Municipal Chairman Michael Gardner by a vote of 350 to 164, a 68%-32% margin.

In court filings, Taschler said that the election was before the earliest permissible date, and that the June election was “illegally elected and installed.” He’s asking the court to restrain Zisa and his officers from making any decisions on party matters until the legal challenger is resolved.

As an alternative, Taschler proposed the naming of a special master to oversee future elections.

Zisa became county chairman in 2018 after Paul DiGaetano declined to seek re-election.

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