Sen. Kevin O'Toole Reflects on Years in NJ Legislature

Senator Kevin O’Toole (R)- NJ reflects on his career and his proudest accomplishments throughout his time in the legislature. Looking ahead, the Senator also shares what he would like to see in New Jersey’s next Governor and what he would like to achieve while serving on the Port Authority board.

4/29/17 #108






"We are pleased to welcome State Senator Kevin O'Toole. Served 22 years in the state legislature. Nearly 30 in public office and he has decided at an incredibly young age to... This is it? Bec... What's up with you? You're a young man. You've done all of these great things. More things to do. And? If somebody worked for General Motors for 30 years and retired, they would have a party, give them a gold watch, and say "great career". I've been 30 years in public service. Loved every minute of it. But it's time to hang it up and move in a different direction and I'm going a different direction. I have a six year Port Authority term coming up. I want to teach a little bit. I have this law firm going on. I've got a wonderful wife and two kids that keep me engaged, so I've got a pretty full schedule. You know, Kev... By the way, Kevin and I are long time friends and we've known each other and had a lot of offline conversations about family more than anything else. I gotta ask you something. People who say, "You're in politics, you're addicted to politics. You can't get out unless they throw you out." I did not have a choice. You know, as an extremely young man, I lost my seat in the state legislature 1985. [laughter] Wait a minute! Why would you have that year right in your mind? Because that's when I started with John Kelly, 1985. It was a terrible year. We won. You lost. You cried. It was terrible. Hold on! I beat him 2 years before. I know you did. You cried! He cried! Yeah! [laughter] But the truth is, I'm not sure if I had won, if I would have had the guts to get out. Yeah. You did. They say in the state senate, it's easier to go out in a body bag than voluntarily surrender yourself and that's the reality. There are folks who are addicted to this world. That's the point. I've seen it happen. It has taken some of the very best public servants and sucked them in. They get defined by their titles, whether you're a senator, or a congressman, governor, they introduce themselves with that. I never do. I'm Kevin. You're Steve. But there are folks "I'm Senator so and so" and that is to me, foolish. It's silly. It's politics as your father taught me is an illusion. You make the best of it. You do good things, but don't think for a moment that it's real. Did Senator...? Hold on! Senator O'Toole and your kids..."