Run-off elections
Feb 18, 2018 | 1435 views | 6 6 comments | 82 82 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dear Editor:

I’m reading with great displeasure the interactions between the Mayor’s office and the City Council regarding the issue of run-off elections. My displeasure comes not from the stances of either groups on the central issue (I personally favor letting the voters make this choice directly) but rather from tone each group is choosing to adopt.

It was unseemly and inflammatory for our newly-elected Mayor to characterize legitimate opposition to his veto of putting the topic on the public ballot as having chosen to “align themselves with….beneficiaries of voter fraud.” – a misleadingly opaque reference to an 8-year old assertion. In response we hear rhetoric from Councilman DeFusco characterizing the Mayor’s opposition as “disgusting”, “gutter politics”, and “Trump-like level of deceit and sleaze”. (Is Donald Trump germane to issues like fixing Washington Street? Why are both factions continuing to cheaply invoke him to score points?) This is a throwback to the “kids in a sandbox” tone and hyperbole that permeated Hoboken politics 10 years ago.

It was a disgrace, petty, and an embarrassment. It was apparent from both groups in this last campaign and it grows more apparent now. To both groups the election is over. You’re in office. We’re depending and demanding that you work with each other as professionals. Agree to disagree when you will, but if you think this town wants to revert back to the juvenile, incessant mud-slinging of the past – think again. Here is my plea. Going forward, tone it down and knock it off. Lest the people who voted you in just as easily vote you out. Your constituents deserve better.

Gregg Thomas

Comments
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sisterluck
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February 21, 2018
Regarding Mike DeFusco's "Trump like" assertions, perhaps if the Mayor didn't repeatedly try to discredit his opponents in the elections by falsely aligning them with Trump, people would be less inclined to point out his own Trump-like behaviors (maybe fixing Washington Street isn't Trump like, but certainly the name calling and false allegations against anyone who opposes him is). Just sayin...
Tottenhamwins
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February 18, 2018
An eight year old assertion? The whole "pay canvassers who VBM" scam never went away. Go look at the campaign filings. Go look at which candidates get 200-400 VBMs. Compare those candidates and their vote tallies to candidates who didn't pay hundreds of people $50 a pop on election day.

Please stop pretending vote buying ever went away. It didn't. You just want to pretend it went away.
greggofboken
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February 18, 2018
Yes. 8 years ago. From the 2/11 story in the Reporter. When the mayor’s spokesperson was asked for supporting evidence of the Mayor’s claims, “Melli sent a link to a Hoboken Reporter article from nearly 8 years ago.” The story continues: “The article does not mention either DeFusco or Ramos....(Mellli added) ‘He is not making any specific accusation of voter fraud’”.

If he is not making a specific accusation of fraud, the language he used to color those who wish the run-off put on the ballot is deliberately inflammatory and misleading in my view, and part of the overheated rhetoric I would hope he refrains from going forward.

Tottenhamwins
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February 22, 2018
So when a guy gets elected to the BOE, to the CC or runs for mayor (and loses) and you see a huge number of people paid $50 on up each, and they all vote by mail, that doesn't make you wonder? It freaking happened a few months ago. It happens every frigging cycle. What, you only pay attention to it when the paper writes about it? You sir are a fool. Anyone who even bothers to look at the campaign filings can tell those votes are being bought.
greggofboken
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February 22, 2018
Tottehamwins: I think you are missing my greater point while inadvertently illustrating it. My point was not whether one side or the other is right in its stance regarding whether the run-off question should be on the public ballot or not.

My point was, and is, about the nature of the dialog and the way in which these opposing groups deal with each other. The language and tone at play is designed to be divisive, demeaning, demonizing of the other and hyperbolic. That was an ugly earmark of this city's past. It made our city government seem juvenile and a laughingstock. That's not how I want my elected representatives to handle themselves.

I wish your reply hadn't sunk to name-calling. I don't think that's helpful. It's an example of what I'm speaking out against.
Tottenhamwins
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February 23, 2018
But it isn't the past - it is the present and you folks are voting for measures that people who actively buy votes support. Stupidity and short-sightedness at its worst and all done because your candidate lost big time. But par for the course with the CC now. It is all about political favoritism and payback now. Bunch of overgrown children running the CC who care more about "winning" than governing.