Dear Editor,

At the Assembly candidate’s debate on May 7 there was discussion on pension, PARRC, teacher tenure and evaluation.  I am compelled to evaluate the candidates. Assemblyman Space: F, disengaged, texting throughout the debate, full of off the cuff platitudes with zero substance or voting record explanation. When I tried to clear up a contested fact with him he rolled his eyes, walked away falsely accusing me of being from “the other camp”.  Zero tolerance; he is one and done. 

G. Phoebus: D- sarcasm about your personal pensionwishes, irrelevant. I continue paying real earned money into a defunct pension. Where is it going? What will be there when I retire?  Extending the retirement age is no solution. 

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N. Orr and J. Stapel: B-, engaged and articulate. Please dig deeper into the facts of issues. 

M. Bilik and M. Grace: thank you for bringing your “A” game!  Extremely articulate, well studied with skill sets to convey complicated issues succinctly and forward thinking ideas for solutions.  You’ve got my vote.  Marie is in the 99th percentile, the only one who sought me out and answered my question on the pension crisis. 

The debate moderator: C+, Fair enough if you want to shut me down because I was compelled to needle the incumbent for an off the cuff remark tossed out with some ridiculous platitude igniting my special education passion but, please apply the same rules to all participants.  You allowed Mr.Space to distribute negative campaign materials targeting only one other candidate; inappropriate and unacceptable even by your own rules. Additionally, I’m looking to the moderator to clamp down on constant cell phone texting of a candidate during a debate, no excuses.  

Respectfully,

Tracy A.  Leal, citizen: teacher

Blairstown Township