Kurt Gardiner shocks Hudco pulling over 1500 votes!

Giant celebration at Turtle Club

With practically no campaign budget, staff and facing the full might of the Hudson County Machine, first time candidate Kurt Gardiner shocked everyone running off the line pulling over 30% of the Hoboken vote for the county freeholder seat including sections of Jersey City Heights.

Although final numbers are not available, it’s already clear Kurt Gardiner’s viral campaign – with no campaign office and a flurry of late endorsements from Council members Peter Cunningham, Ravi Bhalla, Jen Giattino and Dave Mello pulled over 1,500 votes in a small election with scant attention.

Looking at the whole County, Kurt Gardiner managed to deliver the biggest opposition to both Hudco and incumbent Freeholder Anthony “Stick” Romano.  People will awake scratching their heads as to how he did it and political operatives are already enraged on Hoboken Patch.

Kurt Gardiner credits his platform as the pillar of his campaign and the people who spread the message noting his message “resonated.”

There will be further analysis later but it’s already clear that Gardiner running as an independent candidate with no bigger election to rally around has pulled off a huge upset.  He won at least one district in Hoboken outright in the 2nd ward, leveraging a backlash against Councilwoman Beth Mason.

The echoes there may yet lead to real recall efforts.

Talking Ed Note: Reform’s grassroots once again has shown incredible strength able to muster a wallop with no street presence in a small election for a first time candidate.

Kurt Gardiner was additionally aided by good will from his community efforts at the Hoboken Journal, his website on local politics that was all but inactive during the campaign.  He received strong support from Reform activists such as Scott Siegel in the 2nd ward and additional support from Kids First.

Gardiner has been a strong supporter of Reform throughout Hoboken.  Last night, that goodwill paid off.

The other race of import and suspense last night was Ballot #2 on retaining the rent control ordinance.
Efforts to see it overturned in a low turnout election in a referendum were crushed even discounting some nefarious paper balloting out of the Housing Authority and an area of the third ward – home to developer Frank “Pupie” Raia.

Photo courtesy of Greg Bond

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