September 29 - Even though he longs for elective office, Jeff Gardner has been more successful as a back room operator than as a candidate. An attorney and top advisor to Garden State Equality, Gardner was instrumental in bringing same-sex marriage to New Jersey -- using the Courts to impose it after legislation had failed.
Using that success as a springboard, Jeff Gardner had hoped to be picked by the Democrat Party bosses as a candidate for some legislative office like State Senate or Assembly, Congress, even Freeholder. Instead, the ingrates tossed him a line office in Passaic County. One currently held by a popular Republican incumbent.
If Jeff Gardner fails to unseat incumbent County Clerk Kristin Corrado in Passaic County this year, there is talk that he will run for Congress in Pennsylvania next year. A loss for Gardner would be his second in Passaic County. He lost a race for Hawthorne town council in November of last year pretty badly, barely edging out his running mate for fifth place.
If Gardner loses again this year, he can always run for Congress in Pennsylvania's 8th District, where he has maintained an alternative address since 2001. According to real estate records, Jeff Gardner owned a home in New Hope, Pennsylvania before he owned one in Hawthorne, New Jersey.
While Gardner talked about attracting new investment in Hawthorne during the 2013 campaign, the investing he's done has been in New Hope, where he invested in two additional properties and is a landlord. Gardner also has investment property in Florida.
Gardner's New Hope address makes sense as well from a commuting standpoint. His home in New Hope is only 55 miles from his place of employment in Malvern, Pennsylvania, in the western suburbs of Philadelphia. That's about an hour drive if the traffic is good. Gardner's home in Hawthorne is 125 miles from where he works -- a two hours and twenty minutes drive without traffic.
Will Jeff Gardner give up on Passaic County and challenge Republican Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick in the presidential year 2016? Stay tuned.