Phoebus has a meltdown, blames staff she fired

If there is one thing you need to know about Assemblyperson Gail Phoebus it is this:  Since she fired her staff just before Thanksgiving, she has not authored a single piece of legislation.  None.  Nothing.  Nada.


In a weird, stream-of-consciousness posting on a Skylands Tea Party website, Phoebus channels that notorious "Queen of Mean", Leona Helmsley, and actually accuses those she fired of disloyalty because they were lucky enough to find employment because Assemblyman Parker Space and Senator Steve Oroho stepped in to help.


This is what comes from having a sense of entitlement.  Phoebus is a country club politician who owns a golf course and a restaurant in New Jersey and a ranch in Colorado.  She was a fixture on the wealthy equestrian circuit -- attending lavish parties where she bought and sold show horses. 


In 2012, Phoebus hired conservative Bill Winkler to do her writing and provide her with some intellectual help.  Phoebus allowed the Sussex County GOP to use her country club and she became the darling of the Sussex County GOP.  Her pathway to the Freeholder Board was cleared for her -- and three years later she was the anointed candidate to take the Assembly seat left by Alison Littell McHose. 


But it all went to her head and so quickly.  She replaced conservative Winkler with a liberal Obama supporter named Perez and started talking about forcing Senator Steve Oroho out of office.  At the same time, Perez let it be known that he wanted to be a Superior Court judge (something a Senator Phoebus could help him get).












In her meltdown-associated rant, Phoebus blanks out at the memory of how she fired her staff, just days before Thanksgiving.  Without warning she sent them a terse, one paragraph email (drafted by Perez?).  Like Leona Helmsley, the Queen of Mean, Gail Phoebus failed to treat her employees like human beings deserve to be treated.  Phoebus refused to meet with her employees before firing them, did not provide a reason for their firing, and did not give them notice.  Phoebus never looked them in the eyes or even spoke with them.  Phoebus never offered her assistance to help them find alternative employment.  Phoebus didn't care what happened to them -- so long as she has her country club, her ranch in Colorado, and her taxpayer-funded title.


In place of a constituent-service specialist and a legislative aide, Phoebus hired a personal friend to serve as her "body person" and follow her around to make her look important.  Phoebus failed to hire anyone to work on constituent problems or legislation. 


Phoebus lied when, in her meltdown-induced rant, she claimed that she told the LD24 legislators that she wanted to break up their constituent-service operation, before they endorsed her for Assembly in 2015.  If she had told them that, why would they have endorsed her?


When Alison Littell McHose announced that she would not be seeking re-election in 2015, Phoebus personally solicited the support of all the legislative staff members and assured them that she would continue the constituent service operation that had helped thousands of citizens in Sussex, Warren, and Morris counties.  There are literally dozens of people who heard Phoebus say those words, and the first mailing to voters from the Phoebus campaign referenced them:


 Before making her decision to step down, Alison wanted to make sure that the 24th District continued to get the strong constituent services that it has received from the joint legislative office with Senator Steve Oroho. 


Apparently, Gail Phoebus' promise to the voters wasn't worth very much, because it took her less than a year to break it.


Phoebus lied again when, in the midst of her meltdown, she let loose with the accusation that one of her staff members was too political.  Phoebus knows how she demanded that her staffer help the Freeholder campaign of George Graham and Sylvia Petillo.  It was Phoebus who involved her staffer in after-hours politics, something perfectly acceptable, but something that Phoebus now uses as an excuse to rudely fire someone. 


Further, as Freeholder Petillo and her husband can well confirm, the "consultant" that Phoebus' staffer assisted was not Mr. Winkler, it was Mr. Russell.  The campaign finance reports filed by the campaign of Freeholders Graham and Petillo and attested to for accuracy by their treasurer, will confirm this.  And again, it is perfectly acceptable to hire a consultant and Mr. Russell is a fine one.


For years and years, Gail Phoebus has dealt in lies.  She is an unashamed spreader of rumors.  She has whispered some incredible things into the ears of people over the years -- and especially over this last year.  This meltdown by Phoebus has provided the first glimpse -- in writing -- of what she's been about.  It will be our pleasure to unpeel this onion.