The Democratic race for freeholder is still open. In the GOP, though, the choice for the Monmouth County Committee includes Holmdel Mayor Serena DiMaso and Red Bank Councilman John Curley.
The two GOP contenders are a study in contrast. Mayor DiMaso is a mainstream party enthusiast, who is popular with those in charge of the party in Freehold. She is a favorite of the Middletown GOP and she has worked within the structure of the party for many years. Mayor DiMaso is popular in her hometown, and well known in Northern Monmouth County.
Councilman Curley is known as a maverick -- true -- but has a reputation for plain honesty and competence. He is a hard campaigner who is less a creature of the GOP than he is a force of nature. Councilman Curley is a grassroots kind of candidate, who is likely to translate well with the electorate but maybe not so much with the inner circles of the GOP.
Both candidates are strong comers and have solid credentials to go to Freehold. Mayor DiMaso will probably make the core infrastructure of the party more enthusiastic, and Councilman Curley is likely to energize the grassroots and build bridges with some of the factions of the party where ties have been strained.
The issue of who will run with Freeholder Director Lillian Burry is another question. Running two women on a ticket is non-traditional, but this has been anything but a traditional year. A more conventional scenario would be a man and a woman running, which would give the edge to Councilman Curley. What's next? Good question.