THE IRONBOUND – He’s everywhere.
That’s the word on the street here in Newark's East Ward, where Essex County Sherriff Armadno Fontoura is frantically working the phones and showing up at all public events in support of his friend, incumbent East Ward Councilman Augusto “Augie” Amador.
Fontoura doesn’t like fellow lawman former Newark Police Director/Chief Anthony Campos, and he’s going full-bore on behalf of Amador to prevent Campos from grabbing the East Ward council seat.
Phone calls. Grip and grins. Ads in the magazines and Portuguese newspapers.
Ironbound favorite son Fontoura has been more engaged than ever for the past two to three weeks.
InsiderNJ showed up at Ras Baraka’s headquarters, which look2ed like a museum piece homage to a 21st Century urban campaign, with the literature, images and atmosphere all perfectly untouched.
“The mayor’s race is seen as a non-event over here,” a source told InsiderNJ.
As for the East Ward council race, most sources see the five-candidate contest going to a run-off between Campos and Amador
Amador forces are going hard negative to prevent that from happening, with a steady diet of anti-Campos mail lighting up the ward. The idea apparently is to create such a toxic atmosphere that people don’t turn up and vote, enabling Amador’s wheel chair and crutches-bound Old World Portuguese base to get their man’s chin over the May 8th bar.
It’s a base that’s shrunk with each successive election, but the always dynamic Fontoura is projecting goodwill at the side of his old friend, as engaged now as he was when Amador first won the seat two decades ago; his charismatic presence perhaps taking the sting off the mine field of negativity laid in the path of the positive-message trudging Campos.