Golden has never served in the military
HAZLET - Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden is facing steep criticism from veterans after using a Veteran focused social media initiative to promote his political campaign for re-election. Golden has never served in the military in any capacity.
During a day of political campaigning, signs labeled #OnDutyForSheriffGolden were passed out to fellow politicos, including Golden himself. The group posed on numerous occasions and spread the photos throughout social media, a clear attempt to grasp on to the support for the veteran focused initiative for political gain. Because of the political maneuver, Golden was met with heavy criticism by local veterans for his willingness to abuse the veteran focused initiative for personal and political gain.
In 2014, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst, a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army, began a social media initiative for veterans using the title #OnDutyForJoni. Supporters would pose for photos on their social media webpages using the title #OnDutyForJoni as a call for support of Ernst and other veterans serving at home and overseas.
Golden is facing the most competitive challenge to his re-election he has seen in the near decade he has spent in the Sheriff’s Office. His opponent, U.S. Army Colonel Jeff Cantor joined fellow candidate U.S. Army Captain Vincent Solomeno in the veterans focused social media initiative by having their supporters pose online while they served overseas this year.
“I know political campaigns get dirty, but this is beyond the pale. How can we trust a sheriff to protect us who is willing to do whatever it takes to score political points, even if it means co-opting a veterans’ initiative for his own gain? It’s disgraceful.” Vietnam Combat Fighter Pilot Veteran, Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Ray Dothard commented.
Picture from Jeff Cantor for Monmouth County Sheriff Facebook page