A Democratic councilman from Brick who endorsed Republican U.S. Senate candidate Bob Hugin yesterday said tonight that he was switching parties.
Jim Fozman, who has emerged as a political opponent of Mayor John Ducey, a Democrat and his former running mate, now becomes the lone Republican on the seven-member Brick Township Council.
“It became obvious that the Mayor and Council were distancing me because I was increasingly at odds with their lack of transparency, and calling them out on the lack of checks and balances,” said Fozman. “That blatant lack of transparency is a slap in the face to Brick residents. As long as one party rules with absolute power, the people of Brick will always suffer the consequences.”
Fozman said that he is a conservative and that the Brick Democrats have moved to the left.
“The Mayor and council’s Democratic political advisor recently told me, that I am no longer invited to political caucus meetings, because they feel I no longer share their political philosophy. For the past 2 ½ years as it became increasingly evident that my Colleagues moved further to the left, and aligned their philosophies with those of the Hillary Clinton Democrats,” Fozman said in a statement released tonight. “I represent the residents of Brick, not the political views of the Mayor, Council or the Political advisors. My values and principles are shared with the people of Brick, and have always been fiscally and socially conservative, and more in line with the Republican Party.”
Fozman criticized the current council for “shenanigans.”
“Making up the rules as they go along, is not the way good government should be run,” the councilman said.
After his endorsement of Hugin yesterday, Ducey accused Fozman of being a disgruntled job seeking, an allegatuion that councilman’s wife, Vera Schilling Fozman, strongly denied.
“Jim wanted the job of Director of Public Works in Brick at over $100,000 a year. I told him no. We do not hire elected officials or their family members to public jobs in our town,” said Ducey. “It’s a platform I ran on and I will not betray the trust of the Brick voters.”