Talking Down to Castillo and Pawlowski

This article makes it sound as if Jeff Pawlowski and Hector Castillo won a contest at a county fair and were allowed to participate in the debates. Among other things, they fail to mention that Pawlowski actually has a bit of elected experience.

“Was being on TV fun?”

“Oh yes, big-time celebrity Jon Corzine signed an autograph for me… he’s so dreamy…”

From NorthJersey.com:

What do two guys with limited political experience, little funding and no major-party backing know about running for governor?

Enough to get on the ballot.

And, enough to qualify for two state-sanctioned debates.

Hector Castillo and Jeffrey Pawlowski got a taste of fame Tuesday after appearing alongside the two major-party candidates, Democratic Sen. Jon Corzine and Republican Doug Forrester, in a televised network debate. Then they got their own show – an hourlong forum on state public television station NJN taped Thursday afternoon and aired at 8 p.m. Thursday.

Asked how his life had changed after his first TV appearance, Pawlowski said, “I spend my whole day now on the telephone with people saying, ‘Thank God there’s two guys willing to stand up against the big parties. I get people calling me, ‘Thank God you answered the questions the way the people really think.’ ”

Castillo, a 49-year-old physician who ran for mayor of Paterson, and Pawlowski, 44, the Libertarian Party candidate, used their expanded air time to rail against state government they say is so corrupt that insider wheeling and dealing is now the norm.

Pawlowski, who owns a landscape equipment business, said he’s worn his two best suits for his twin television appearances.

The two earned their spot in the debates by raising $300,000 each for their campaigns, although Pawlowski did it by loaning his campaign $275,000 to get sanctioned by the Election Law Enforcement Commission, then repaid himself.

Castillo has received $405,000 in taxpayer matching funds; Pawlowski did not qualify. Six other independent candidates also are running for governor.

Asked about the fairness of a system that allows taxpayer money to be spent on a candidate who won’t win, Castillo defended his candidacy.

He suggested that the next governor may even want to borrow some ideas put forth by the third-party candidates.

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