The MSV City Council 2011 Race Preview
There’s a lot of friction going on out there. Attacks from the Mason-Russo cabal to defend the Masonic Temple of Destruction and Corruption have been unleashed in every direction. Expect more of the same on and throughout election day.
Will it be enough? Get out and vote and drag your friends too. It’s ELECTION DAY!
The 2nd: Beth Mason’s descent into the Mason411 toilet
Although another very late ELEC report was released showing massive incomplete expenditures, such as advertising on her uber smear site Hoboken411 and even a television commercial last fall – the self-proclaimed Queen of Transparency is reporting none of it: an absolute clear cut violation.
But Beth Mason’s behavior has been nothing short of a violation for a long while since she got into the bed with the Russo Crime Syndicate. She’s been behaving as bad or worse than they do although it’s not money she’s after but pure power in Hoboken and beyond. She’s wielded it in unethical and illegal ways both, whether funding voter fraud in the 4th ward with excessive unethical and borderline legal campaign funds or abusing any number of procedures as chair of the City Council meetings almost out of the gate.
In short, she’s a nightmare on Hoboken. She’s shown nothing but contempt for its residents, inflicting lies in email blasts and mailers alike from the budget to everything and anything while doing zilch as a 2nd ward councilwoman and far more damage bedding her political ally Mike Russ every two weeks inside council chambers.
Her most recent distasteful action is a toss up: working with the Russo clan to undermine a direly needed sale of the local hospital to keep it viable for seven years minimum or her support to protect Mike Russo’s seat on the Hoboken Housing Authority. This even after he’s seen and heard discussing political manipulations (and bribes) tossing in a quid pro quo with another member he says he installed on the very same body. The Hoboken Housing Authority has been the scene of severe voting manipulations, its underpinnings so severely detrimental to Hoboken elections, it turned last November’s 4th ward special election into an absolute farce.
Conventional media wisdom says Beth Mason is a well known incumbent with high name recognition against fresh opposition and she is assured victory. But her main challenger Tom Greaney is a solid member of the Reform community and although he’s been attacked viciously by her for financial problems a decade and a half ago, the boomerang may turn as it did when Mason fed Hoboken411 word of Peter Cammarano’s illegitimate daughter.
As it turns out, The Jersey Sting said the information of that fact was one Cammarano hoped would be exploited and he would use it to garner sympathy from the “locked-in” voters. He proved correct as the cultural stigma of out-of-wedlock births worked in his favor, not against him. As a result of that fiasco and her support of Church Tower pilots with no income means testing, Beth Mason went down in flames.
To put it short, Beth Mason must rely on low information voters who know her least as the reform base has long left and a reliance on paid votes in Applied Housing may or may not turn out in sufficient numbers as in her mayoral efforts in the back of the fourth ward.
Some big money acolytes won’t want to believe it but people are waiting to crawl over broken glass to vote against her, including her neighbors all over Hudson St. Tom Greaney has shown the thoughtful mindset and intelligence the 2nd ward absolutely expects from a representative. A runoff is not altogether definite either. The latest smears by Beth Mason’s hateful minion may in fact put Tom Greaney over the top delivering a final crushing blow to her Hoboken political career.
The money advantage could help her get by though with the distant minor candidacy of Franz Paetzhold swaying the outcome.
Reform needs a strong effort here tomorrow. Turnout will be critical in this election and especially to this race.
When the dust settles, the Russo-Mason cabal’s power is crashing and burning no matter whether they individually survive or not. The election results in the citywide council races will define Hoboken for several years at a minimum but will carry right into the next local election for mayor.
5th ward’s incumbent rock: Peter Cunningham
The 5th ward is getting attention as it features four candidates with Councilman Peter Cunningham being the incumbent everyone is aiming for but he’s rock solid. His support has not diminished in the ward. In fact his performance for fiscal restraint and auditing combined with his unwavering insistence of an investigation into the million dollar parking utility theft was his finest hour and his voice was unwavering. His support from people in the ward is unyielding. Cunningham never stood down to the Russo clan that was trying to cover up the massive fraud by Parking Director John Corea and a mob related south Jersey arcade company that won a no bid collection contract in Hoboken’s Parking Utility.
The 5th ward has one of the highest per capita ownership rates in Hoboken. These are some of the best informed and serious voters in town. When the dust settles, there may be a runoff but Peter Cunningham should stand on top. The attempts to make a partisan issue of Cunningham’s voter registration by Mason’s minion only reverberates among the small minority with the Hoboken Republicans. While the Mason drones claim it matters, that group has seen its influence practically fall off the scale in town. Pumping them up as giant killers is beyond wishful thinking. Mason’s minions want to take out Peter Cunningham in the worst way and Beth Mason herself even attacked him, well his empty chair at a City Council meeting while he attended a family funeral.
4th ward challenge
Here’s the a potential shocker: a tight too close to call race in the 4th ward. While an investigation by NJ’s top law enforcement is nowhere near a closed matter, although some Old Guard members are telling themselves and others it is, the rumblings out of here are making this maybe the biggest surprise anywhere in town.
Tim Occhipinti has been overheard complaining he needs more help and support but was told there’s none to give. “You’re on your own kid,” was the response. The paper ballot voting factory, re: Tim’s “base” is not going to generate anywhere near the record setting submissions of 500 this round. It’s going to come up far short of that and this could spell potential trouble.
MSV is predicting one earthquake in the election, and it’s likely to be downtown.
Although Rami Pinchevsky has worked hard in this election cycle, the biggest asset here and perhaps not utilized to the widest extent possible is Mayor Dawn Zimmer. This is her ward, the one reformer who fought a death match in repeated hand to hand combat against Chris Campos and won. If the flailing Tim Occhipinti continues to spiral, this race could be determined by turnout with reduced numbers. The petulant arrogant Occhipinti is guaranteed to see his totals from last November dwindle. Can Rami Pinchevsky see the mayor’s base carry him to the finish line? Or has he not grabbed on to Superwoman’s cape soon enough?
The Heart of Reform beats and wins in the 6th
The 6th ward is a combination of solid reform voting majorities with a strong Kids First team among the a large group of homeowners with families. The reflexive support for Nino Giacchi is not there and he doesn’t have the machine backing him with a Dave Roberts PAC overwhelming the opposition. That “Jen Girl” Giattino is a dynamo taking the whole city by surprise with a Wall Street work ethic and all-around intelligence with people skills not seen in a political novice, making her the most impressive entry across town. Councilman Giacchi has been around for 10 years, too long with too little to show but a laundry list of bad decisions, failure and being the yes man to the boys club of mismanagement. Turn out the lights Nino: lovely family, sharp guy, cordial to a fault with a horrible voting record. Most recently a rubber stamp to the corrupt Mike Russo. Helleva bad legacy to go out on but Councilman Giacchi embraced it. On Election Day he pays for it.
The 3rd ward is the area expected to be in the camp of Mike Russo and his subsidized neighbors’ strong voting base. But Greg Lincoln hammered on corruption right out of the gate and scored huge when the truth about Councilman Mike Russo was laid bare for ALL to see in FBI surveillance videos.
As Mayor Dawn Zimmer said in her MSV interview, the votes are there but this is a heavy renting ward where apathy is the killer. Greg Lincoln has been a superb candidate, registering new voters and hitting untapped areas with very light historical voting patterns in municipal elections. Anything remotely close here is a huge victory in and of itself. Lightning could strike if the power of the heavens awakens the quiet voting majority here.
Entrenchment Ends in the First!
The clearest clash of the bad old days in Hoboken and the modern, professional and ethical standards of the future are in direct polar extremes in the expected grueling death match between Old Guard standard bearer and Russo stalwart Terry Castellano and the corruption chronicler/fighter Eric Kurta.
MSV saved the best for last for one reason. This is THEE DEATH KNELL for the corrupt Old Guard. A defeat here signals the end of the reign of terror, incompetence and cover ups of abuses too many to list and what for too many consider to be the normal course of business.
Eric Kurta has been a man reborn, emerging like a rock star relic unveiling a new hit album and his team have shown a fight Terry Castellano never thought possible. In short, he’s her worst nightmare. He’s everything she detests: his honesty, his dedication, his steely resolve to work to make Hoboken accountable at every level of government.
He’s going to impose his will with his team on the 1st ward. It’s going to be the biggest echo throughout town when the linchpin of the old, dark ways comes crashing to the ground.
When the dust settles on this election, MSV is predicting victory for Reform!
If you want to help, go down to the Willow St. office on First St!
Now go make it happen and bring it home!!