To the Editor:

I’m pleased to offer this letter of support and endorsement for Rosemary Becchi, the Republican Candidate to represent New Jersey’s 11th District for US Congress, in the upcoming 2020 Election.

I’ve listened to and met Ms. Becchi numerous instances these past months.  And as one who considers himself first and foremost an Independent, voting for the best and most capable candidate to represent her/his constituency that I’m a part of, I’ve determined that Ms. Becchi is pragmatic (not dogmatic), reasonable, incredibly well-qualified and indeed moderately aligned. This last point is important . . . more on this in a bit.

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Let me first say, I find myself somewhat surprised I’m not voting for Mikie Sherrill in this upcoming Election.  As a fellow Naval Academy alumnus, I was thrilled to learn of then Candidate Sherrill running for US Congress for the 2018 Election.  A combat zone helicopter pilot, who compiled sterling academic achievement, with later service as US Prosecutor; and, oh by the way, a wife and mother of 4 children . . . what’s not to like?  Service to Nation runs in her veins.  2018 Candidate Sherrill’s campaign platform seemed to align with a lot of what we in Morris County and surrounding area seek in our representatives—education, taxes, domestic and national security weighted priorities.

Unfortunately, a quick review of Representative Sherrill’s Congressional voting record suggests just how strongly she’s seemed to have strayed from her own inaugural platform.  Net net, a 99% record of voting in lockstep with the more extreme progressive of her Congressional colleagues.  I’m not here to presume how nor for whom any one person should vote—voting is personal, and soap box preaching as a private non-candidate citizen is not my thing.  But I will suggest Representative Sherrill’s voting record does not align with the vast majority of NJ-D11 residents, most of whom hover in the moderate range of Liberal and Conservative politics, regardless of party affiliation.  I believe most of us in D11 do not subscribe to the rather extreme tendencies of the current Democratic Party we’ve all been witnessing these past 18 months.  Quiet acceptance and indeed encouragement of prolonged, destructive and dangerous rioting across our nation’s major cities is not moderate (whether one is Democrats or Republican).  Defunding the Police is not moderate.  Turning a blind eye to the aggressive encroachment of the PRC’s military in the South China Sea is not moderate—editorial note, this is scary stuff . . . as is their long history of wanton theft of Western corporates’ IP.  Sanctuary Cities are not moderate. Tax expansion in our already over-taxed State is not moderate.  To be fair, I can’t say for sure but I suspect Representative Sherrill has likely found herself proverbially boxed in on many of her votes, not of her own doing.  There is a certain “you’re with us full stop . . . or against us” thematic pervading the Democratic Party at the national level.  Would she herself be surprised 2 years ago with an advance look at her actual going-forward voting record?  That’s an interesting question . . .

So here is my ask . . . Please do yourself and your children (as the case may warrant) the service of simply reviewing Candidate Becchi’s platform.  Rosemary brings incredibly strong and relevant experience to this debate—tax lawyer, IRS veteran, Senate staffer (she effectively wrote the 529 College Savings Plan).  She’s a longtime NJ resident and devoted wife and mother of 3 daughters (did I mention she’s a fellow hockey parent!).  In this current state of mania, hyper-politics and unreasonableness we’re ALL witnessing in DC . . . Rosemary is pragmatic and reasonable.  She’s a listener and a doer.  By her own admission she’s a legislative wonk and geek (said with love!)—she knows how to write meaningful policy that will get widest signatures for passage and enactment.  Most reading this are long enough in New Jersey to recognize the NJ PBA and majority of local PBAs across the State announcing their endorsement for Republican Candidate Becchi in this upcoming Election is not insignificant.  Look at Rosemary’s platform—it truly speaks to most ALL of us across D11, regardless of party affiliation and persuasion.

As a father of 2 high school age daughters and a high school son, I absolutely want to see more woman representation across our Government—at the US, State and local levels.  Diversity of thought and perspective is a good thing.  It’s good for our country (and by association our businesses) and it’s good for our families.  And it’s good for your daughters and mine.  By all means, vote your conscience for POTUS, whatever that may be.  But please do not feel bound to mark all the way left side of ballot.  In this Election, at this time, Rosemary Becchi will be the Representative to best represent the interests of her/our NJ District 11 constituency.

Stephen Spagnuolo

Chatham

Stephen Spagnuolo is a longtime Morris County resident and New Jersey native.  He’s a former Marine Corps infantry officer and US Naval Academy alumnus.  In his current capacity as consultant and advisor to and on behalf of domain cybersecurity companies and regional and international companies and public sector organizations, with regard to their digital security & risk leadership posture, his work intersects daily with private sector and US national security imperatives.