The crowd cheered in support of Brian Stack's official announcement of his race for a state senate seat.
The supporters included people from Union City and throughout the 33rd District, who waited for the long anticipated announcement that Brian Stack would be running for the 33rd District seat of the State Senate, which encompasses Guttenberg, Hoboken, part of Jersey City, Union City, Weehawken and West New York.
His former campaign slogan "Union City First," will now be "People First" as he makes a play for the democratic nomination for the State Senate seat.
"Tonight's announcement is a decision I made because I believe you should always come first," said Stack last Thursday. "As a state senator I will fight for the needs of the people of the 33rd District."
The seat is currently being held by Senate Majority Leader Bernard Kenny of Hoboken, who has yet to announce any plans for the upcoming primary.
"I want to recognize Senator Kenny for his years of service," said Stack. "I spoke to the senator and we both have a mutual respect for each other."
Fellow party support
Offering their support for Stack's new political venture were long time colleagues and close friends such as Rep. Albio Sires, who served with Stack in the State Assembly.
"Brian and I have a friendship of many years, we practically started out [in politics] together," said Sires. "We have a lot to be proud of in Brian Stack, our next senator of the 33rd District."
Also attending was new Assemblyman Silverio "Sal" Vega, also mayor of West New York, along with fellow commissioners Caridad Rodriguez and Gerald Lange, recently appointed to the Board of Freeholders.
"[In my first weeks as a mayor] no other mayor has helped me more to do the right thing for West New York as your mayor," said Vega.
Stack's own Union City commissioners were also present as was, Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise, fellow Assemblyman Lou Manzo and Vinnie Prieto, as well as Mayors Dennis Ellwell of Secaucus and David Della Donna of Guttenberg, and members of the Hoboken and Jersey City councils among others.
"Brian, next time see if you can get a few friends to show up," joked DeGise, who is also running for re-election this year. "It's going to be my honor to be on the same ticket with him, and I look forward to continuing to have a good working relationship with Senator Stack."
Sounding the battle cry
Stack arrived to thunderous applause and what has become his official campaign song of "We will rock you", which replayed about three time before he made it through the crowds and to the front of the stage.
Serving as hosts for the night were Weehawken Mayor Richard Turner and Teresita Diaz, assistant principal for Jose Marti Middle School.
"You don't become the mayor of Union City and a member of the best Trenton Assembly in the state, if you don't represent the best that Hudson County has to offer," said Turner. "Brian Stack is the most hardworking, dedicated elected official that you will come across."
After some brief words of support from his colleagues, Rep. Sires gave Stack his opening introductions.
"It's great to be home, and it's great to be in Union City," said Sires. "I want to say how honored I am to have the job of introducing the next state senator from here in New Jersey."
During his remarks, Stack said he will be dedicated to serving the public seven days a week, 24 hours a day all year around. He said that he is truly about representing the interests of the people in the state senate, and does not intend to be a Trenton "insider."
"We are putting the people first, and this is what happens when you put people first," said Stack. "People come together bigger than anything else, regardless of affiliation or political parties. This is what makes this county, Union City, and the 33rd District so special."
Stack has promised constituents that he will continue to remain accessible with his open door policy, which he has carried through his time as mayor and in the Assembly, and looks to incorporate constituents in the law making process.
"You have made the difference with your ideas and suggestions," said Stack. "Legislation introduced in Trenton will be the ideas that you bring to me, not special interests."
"I promise to be a voice on education, property tax reform, and working together [with everyone] to bring more state aid for our community," he added. "To the Hispanic community [dear to my heart] you will have a voice in the state senate. I will fight day and night for your needs in Trenton."
Wrapping up with thanks to numerous close supporters from his colleagues in government to his mom. Stack then gave one final promise.
"I'd like to thank all of you who came out tonight and continue to offer support," said Stack. "This will be a campaign like you have never seen run before in the 33rd District. That I promise you." Jessica Rosero can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org