Read the State Legislative Tracker. New edition available now!

Seth Grossman

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The information about this individual is current as of when his or her last campaign ended. See anything that needs updating? Send a correction to our editors
Seth Grossman
Former candidate for
Governor of New Jersey
Elections and appointments
Last electionJune 4, 2013
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
City Councilman, Atlantic City
Atlantic County Board of Freeholders
Bachelor'sDuke University
J.D.Temple University
Personal website
Campaign website
Seth Grossman was a 2013 Republican candidate for Governor of New Jersey. He was defeated by incumbent Gov. Chris Christie in the primary election on June 4, 2013.[1]


Grossman graduated from Duke University and Temple Law School after completing public school in Atlantic City. As a student, he worked every summer since age 14 from washing dishes to driving a cab. He was in the Army National Guard unit at the Atlantic City Armory for 6 years. He started his own law practice in Atlantic City in 1975 and later moved to Somers Point. He often takes difficult cases such as Steve Lonegan’s second lawsuit to stop state government borrowing without voter approval as required by the NJ Constitution. The NJ Supreme Court did not stop borrowing by “independent” state authorities, but did order their loan documents to truthfully disclose that state taxpayers have no legal obligation to repay their debts. Seth Grossman was the attorney for a charter school in Pleasantville.[2]

Grossman hosted talk radio programs on South Jersey’s leading stations since 2001. In 2003, he founded, an education organization that explains the meaning of New Jersey’s motto and how only basic principles of American liberty can put an end to New Jersey’s destructive “pay to play” political culture. From 2009 to 2011, Grossman taught “Introduction to Government and Politics at Atlantic Cape Community College. Grossman wrote a weekly political column in the print and on-line editions of the Current Newspapers of Atlantic County which was read by more than 50,000 people each week.[2]

In 2008, Grossman, Steve Lonegan, and dozens of others displayed signs and distributed literature outside a public “Town Hall Meeting” on a public sidewalk outside a public school to oppose Democratic Governor Jon Corzine plan to mortgage the Parkway and Turnpike and raise tolls by 700% . Police and public school officials instructed them to stop, and they arrested both Lonegan and Grossman for “trespassing” when they refused. All charges were dropped and apologies given when video of the incident went on the internet. Public outrage over the incident led to the defeat of Corzine’s plan later that year—and Corzine’s re-election bid the following year.[2]

Grossman also founded and led the Chelsea Neighborhood Association, the largest and most effective neighborhood organization in Atlantic City from 1975 through 1992.[2]


  • Bachelor's degree - Duke University
  • Juris Doctor - Temple Law School

Political career

City Council of Atlantic City (1986-1990)

Grossman was elected to City Council of Atlantic City in 1986 against the opposition of both the regular Republican and Democratic organizations. Grossman played an important part in putting together a coalition that controlled municipal spending and debt during his four year term.

Grossman represented Atlantic City, Ventnor, Margate, and Longport on the Atlantic County Board of Freeholders for three years after defeating the Republican incumbent in the June 1988 primary election by a single vote. He prepared a comprehensive study of local governments as an elected member of the Atlantic City Charter Study Commission in 1976 and recommended that Atlantic City adopt a nonpartisan mayor-council form of government with seven council members.[2]



See also New Jersey gubernatorial and lieutenant gubernatorial election, 2013

Grossman ran for Governor of New Jersey in 2013.[1] He was the only Republican challenger to compete against incumbent Chris Christie for the Republican Party nomination in the primary election on June 4, which Christie won.[3][4]

  • Primary
Governor of New Jersey Republican Primary Election, 2013
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngChris Christie Incumbent 91.9% 205,666
Seth Grossman 8.1% 18,095
Total Votes 223,761
Election Results via New Jersey Department of State.

Race background

Election rating

In November 2012, the New Jersey gubernatorial election was rated by the Washington Post as one of the top five races to watch in 2013.[5] Christie's high-wattage presence notwithstanding, the contest never rose to the level of excitement originally anticipated. This was due in part to the decision of former Newark Mayor Cory Booker to run for U.S. Senate rather than attempt to oust Christie in 2013. Booker had long been considered the Democratic front-runner and best hope to take on the juggernaut incumbent, until announcing his - ultimately winning - Senate bid, and leaving comparatively unknown Democrats on their own to face Christie, whose upward career trajectory and bipartisan appeal made him a formidable opponent in the election.[6]


Incumbent Republican Gov. Chris Christie and Democratic state Sen. Barbara Buono each faced a single challenger in the primary election on June 4, although neither presented a substantial challenge at the polls: Christie and Buono won their respective party nominations with roughly 90 percent of the vote.[7][8]

Former Atlantic City Councilman Seth Grossman was the sole Republican to brave a run against the popular first-term governor, whose profile rose following the response to Hurricane Sandy. Grossman's campaign criticized Christie for being overly moderate, while Buono's opponent Troy Webster, advisor to the mayor of East Orange, believed he was uniquely suited to making New Jersey friendlier to "the working poor and middle class families who have been literally 'thrown under the bus.'" Grossman and Webster were endorsed by the weekly publication NJ Today.[9]

Selection of running mates

In New Jersey, gubernatorial candidates have 30 days to select a lieutenant gubernatorial running mate with whom to share their ticket in the general election. Immediately after launching his re-election campaign, Christie secured his running mate, Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno. Buono, meanwhile, waited until July 29 to formally announce her choice of union leader Milly Silva, the executive vice president of 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, as her running mate.[10][11] The two-woman ticket went up against incumbent pairing Chris Christie and Kim Guadagno in addition to a number of third-party opponents in the general election contest that took place on November 5, 2013.


Christie was heavily favored to win re-election, with his campaign raising nearly double that of Buono's in the primary and maintaining a decisive double-digit advantage in the polls throughout the election season.[12][13] In the final week before the general election, Christie boasted a staggering 24.3-point average polling lead.[14] He also had bipartisan support, which was crucial in a state where Democrats outnumbered Republicans by over 700,000, according to party registration statistics provided by the New Jersey Department of State.[15]

Public financing

Since 1977, New Jersey gubernatorial primary and general election candidates can qualify for a public funding program whereby candidates who raise a minimum amount of money are dispensed tax-generated funds, controlled by the state election law enforcement commission, in direct proportion to campaign donations given from the public. In 2013, the qualifying sum for primary gubernatorial candidates was $380,000.[16] The purpose of the program is to lessen the influence of corporate contributions in elections. On February 2, 2013, then-presumptive Democratic nominee Barbara Buono's campaign reported that it had surpassed the $380,000 mark.[17] By that time, Christie's campaign had already raised $2 million. Unlike in 2009, Christie declined to use matching funds in the 2013 primary, but he decided in August to opt into the program for the general election phase. Under the program, Christie became eligible for an additional $8 million, approximately. The terms also required him to participate in two debates with Buono before the general election.[17][18]

Seth Grossman[19] Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
Post-Primary ReportJune 21, 2013$656$1,535$(1,143)$1,048
Running totals


Grossman outlines his priorities for the office of New Jersey Governor on his 2013 official campaign website. His campaign themes include, but are not limited to the following:

  • "Repudiate (refuse to pay) unconstitutional debt not approved by voters."[20]
  • "Stop the pension scam. Cap public pensions at $50,000 per year. No more pensions for part-time politicians."[20]
  • "Distribute the Property Tax Relief Fund (Money collected from the State Income Tax) equally to every school district in the state."[20]
  • "Cut all tolls to collect only enough money to repair and maintain the roads, tunnels, and bridges being used. Use Delaware Bridge tolls to complete Route 55 and Make Route 40 a four lane divided highway."[20]
  • "Enforce immigration laws. Teach and encourage legal immigrants to learn English, and understand and appreciate America’s culture of liberty and Constitutional government."[20]
  • "Post all government and public school salaries, contracts, and payments on the internet."[20]
  • "Let each individual make the important choices affecting his or her own life. Don’t force any employee to join a union or pay dues to any organization to keep his or her job. Don’t force government agencies and public schools to only hire union companies. Let parents apply their children’s share of state public education money to the schools they choose for their children."[20]


Grossman's 2013 gubernatorial campaign was endorsed by the weekly publication NJ Today, along with Democratic primary hopeful Troy Webster.[21]


Grossman for NJ Governor - April 7, 2013

"The Solution is Still the Same for NJ's Debt" - April 12, 2013

Grossman on recent NJ gun legislation - May 5, 2013

See also

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 New Jersey State Board of Elections, "Primary candidate list for 2013 Governor," accessed April 4, 2014 (dead link)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 E-mail biography submission from candidate, received April 8, 2013
  3., "Christie and Buono wrap yawner primary season," June 4, 2013
  4. Asbury Park Press, "Christie, Buono get five other primary foes," April 2, 2013
  5. Washington Post, "The 5 best races of 2013," November 30, 2012
  6. Public Policy Polling, "Christie in trouble for re-election," July 20, 2011
  7. NJToday "Primary election results," accessed June 5, 2013
  8., "Christie and Buono wrap yawner primary season," June 4, 2013
  9. NJ Today, "EDITORIAL: Troy Webster For Governor," April 14, 2013
  10., "Barbara Buono picks union leader Milly Silva as running mate," July 25, 2013
  11. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named
  12. PolitickerNJ, "Christie and Buono wrap yawner primary season," June 4, 2013
  13. NJ News 12 "Poll: Christie remains popular in NJ," accessed April 15, 2013
  14. RealClearPolitics, "New Jersey Governor - Christie vs. Buono," accessed November 3, 2013
  15. New Jersey Department of State Elections Division, "Statewide Voter Registration Summary," May 7, 2013
  16., "Sen. Buono raises almost $250K in first month of campaigning," January 2, 2013
  17. 17.0 17.1 The Star-Ledger, "Buono qualifies for public matching funds in N.J. governor's race," February 4, 2013
  18., "Christie campaign participating in public financing program," August 20, 2013
  19. New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission, "Campaign Finance Report Summary: Seth Grossman," June 24, 2013
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 20.3 20.4 20.5 20.6 Official Campaign Website, "Issues," accessed April 9, 2013
  21. NJ Today, "EDITORIAL: Troy Webster For Governor," April 14, 2013