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Menendez Fundraiser: Joe Biden Has Left the Building

Patch photographer shoots motorcade leaving Old Glen Road location of event.

Update: Patch photographer Warren Westura reported that a motorcade, likely carrying Vice President Joe Biden, had left the Old Glen Road home that hosted a Sen. Robert Menendez fundraiser, at about 6:45 p.m.

The Morristown area is expected to be turned upside Monday afternoon, when a fundraiser for Sen. Robert Menendez at a Morris Township home welcomes Vice President Joe Biden as its guest of honor.

Phillip and Barbara Sellinger, of Old Glen Road in Morris Township, will be holding the fundraiser Monday evening for Menendez, who is seeking re-election. Phillip Sellinger is a managing shareholder for the GreenbergTraurig law firm, in Florham Park. The couple has hosted other Democratic Party events at their home before, including .

The senator himself is honored to have the opportunity to have Biden in attendance.

"I'm honored that the Vice President is coming to Morristown. This is a great opportunity to let people know how we're working together to fight back for New Jersey's middle class and working families," Menendez said in a statement released through his office. "I'm very pleased that everyone has cooperated to eliminate any possible disruptions and distractions to local schools and businesses for the Vice President's visit."

Local Democrats, such as Lew Candura of the Morris County Democratic Committee, echoed that sentiment.

"I'm very honored, as the Morris County Democratic Chairman, that the Vice President of the United States is coming to Morris Township this Monday in support of Senator Robert Menendez's re-election campaign and to help fight back for New Jersey's middle class and working families," Candura, who serves as chairman of the committee, said.

The Morristown Partnership Facebook page advised people of the March 19 event and the expected traffic delays involved. "Expect traffic delays around Morristown–specifically Columbia Turnpike and Park Avenue near Route 24," according to the note.

The Morris School District issued an alert Friday afternoon via its Honeywell alert system on the Vice President's expected visit, noting all afternoon school activities would be cancelled and that schools would close an honor early.

"Extensive road closures, traffic delays and gridlock are expected between 4:30 and 7 p.m., on Monday, March 19," according to the release. "So that we may ensure that all our students arrive home before that time, all schools will dismiss one hour early on Monday. Please make appropriate arrangements for this earlier than normal dismissal and arrival home." 

Morristown Mayor Tim Dougherty, however, said Saturday that there had been some error in communication regarding schools being affected by the fundraiser. 

"The schools are not closing early," he said after having spoken with Superintendent of Schools Thomas Ficarra. Dougherty added that after school programs also were not expected to be affected by the event.

Phillip Sellinger noted the fundraiser was an invitation-only event and that the press was not invited to attend, and for all inquiries to be directed through the Sen. Menendez press office.

Are you OK with the expected disruptions in the area because of Joe Biden's visit, or has the whole thing got you a little perturbed?

Interested Observer March 19, 2012 at 05:03 PM
This house has quite a bit of history to it: http://www.nytimes.com/1998/08/12/nyregion/hamlet-jolted-by-charges-that-woman-ran-brothel.html?pagewanted=2&src=pm
Cara DePalma March 19, 2012 at 08:20 PM
It's not absurd when you think about it. By having a fundraiser in a private home you are saving on the cost of a hall or hotel banquet room. More money goes to the cause than the cost of the event. And when is there not traffic at rush hour anyway? If they had not announced it and there was traffic, people would have just thought it's a typical day in Jersey!
millresident March 20, 2012 at 01:34 AM
Patch editor was not thinking. This event turned every town that that rt 24 crosses! Millburn,Springfield,Maplewood,and Union.. You could have notified the rest of us!
The Stig March 20, 2012 at 02:40 AM
Stop voting for Democrats and we'll warn you in the future.
Richard Dean March 23, 2012 at 01:07 AM
I find it very interesting that they picked one of the most Republican counties of the nation considering very few Democratic Party members have won county wide elections since 1860.

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