The People of Hoboken do not Need Morally Questionable Attempts to Disqualify Candidates

Romano and Fonseca

Eric Dixon is a lawyer with the sterling reputation who does the legal profession an important service by providing his clients with solidly built aggressive arguments. That he has been retained by Hoboken resident Patricia Waiters, in her crusade to stop Freeholder Romano from running for reelection and for Hoboken mayor in the same election, is a credit to her. Attorney Eric Dixon will make the strongest possible legal case but whether or not the voters are allowed the freedom of choice on Romano’s Freeholder and Mayoral runs is an issue the court will decide.  

What is not at issue is the fact that Hoboken City Council members Michael DeFusco and Jennifer Giattino are, like smart risk takers, also hedging their bets. While Freeholders Romano’s action are distinct in that he is simultaneously running for two offices elected on the same day, the consequences of a win by either of the two councilmen-cum-candidates is exactly the same – special elections in November 2018. Giattino’s entrance into the Mayoral race was only made after Zimmer’s abrupt June 20th departure announcement and thus because Giattino could not have stepped down to have her ward seat filled this November she has engaged in no hypocrisy or catcalls on this topic. But, if as many believe to be the truth, that the Defusco’s campaign unofficially began in 2016 and that DeFusco knew over a year ago he would run for mayor he could have shown his dedication to the people of the 1st ward by resigning and ensuring that they have a ward councilman elected this November who can actually tend their needs. Instead of resigning a year ago and allowing a special election for his ward seat, DeFusco decided to use it to hedge against his statistically likely mayoral loss while he attacks another for engaging in what is essentially the same action.   

The attorney hired to pursue Freeholder Romano is a Republican activist known for his good government, anti-corruption, and grass roots conservative leanings. There is no doubt that he has only the rights of voters in mind. But in the minds of voters it should be morally clear that those politicians who impugn others for the very same actions they engage in are often the ones most troubling. I invite my fellow candidates to join me in leaving behind the negative politics of destruction and to present to the people of Hoboken the problems as they have identified them and proposed solutions. 

As the Hoboken candidate independent of local political tribes, I have had the liberty to address issues head on. From the war on parking to over-taxation and over-bonding, the destruction of Washington St to flooding, the rise in aggressive panhandling to the failure to update the municipal master plan and more, the status quo political leadership has failed the people and city of Hoboken. The people of Hoboken do not need morally questionable attempts to disqualify candidates, they need real solutions and they are mature enough to choose their leadership. 

Joshua Einstein is the independent candidate for Hoboken City Council, the Republican State Committeeman from Hudson County, a member of the Hudson County Regional Jewish Council, and has been published in over 13 papers and websites.

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  • Joey Ladron

    By this logic, no incumbent should ever run for re-election, and no elected official should ever run for higher office? Rather than have council members run for Mayor, it should only be people with no experience? Or in order to run, you would like to see them replaced with people with no experience who would need to be brought in by special election every year, creating chaos in both government and election cycles and costing taxpayers thousands of dollars? That’s how this would play out. If you want every official to resign before running, you’ll have a glut of talented people in low offices and a circus of untested and likely unqualified people running for higher office.

    The real issue is that if Romano runs for two seats and wins both, he will have to pick one, presumably Mayor, and leave the other, presumably Freeholder, empty. The Freeholder seat would be filled by the remainder of the Freeholder board, so instead of someone elected by Hoboken residents, it will be filled by people who were elected by every city in Hudson County except for Hoboken. We don’t have very good representation now, but that would be even worse. How can you allow for a situation that ensures disenfranchisement of an entire city?

    • Joshua Einstein

      Both the election of a ward councilman to the mayors office and the election of Freeholder Romano to another term as freeholder and to the mayors office would trigger a special election in November 2018. For the ward councilman the city council could appoint someone until the special election and in the case of Freeholder Romano if he wins both, the Board of Chosen Freeholders could appoint someone until the special election as well. Both have the same consequences just on different scales. It is not my position that elected officials should never seek other office but that positing the consequences of a political rival engaging in a certain action is irresponsible while engaging in actions with the same result if successful is hypocritical.

      • Joey Ladron

        The suggestion that a councilperson should resign before running for Mayor is prohibitive to elected officials seeking higher office, and contrary to standard practice.

        If you support Waiters and Dixon’s core argument, how can you claim that there is anything morally questionable by someone else making the same argument? Wrong is wrong. Romano is the only one asking for two votes, knowing that one is being thrown away.

        • Joshua Einstein

          There mere fact that something is regularly done is not an argument that it is good or acceptable. Moreover, I never said I agreed with Dixon’s legal argument but rather that the courts will decide, that Dixon is a good attorney, and that Waiters is smart to have hired him. The truth remains that DeFusco has attacked Romano a la the disenfranchisement line of attack you yourself abandoned because DeFusco’s action create the same situation for his ward. There is a lot of ridiculous posturing in politics but it is never more immature than when one a politician attacks another for similar actions.

          • Joey Ladron

            It seems the posturing here is that you tried to stake out some moral high ground by praising Waiters and Dixon. Having abandoned that, this is clearly nothing more than a political attack. That’s fine, you’re entitled to your opinion, but call it what it is, you’re no different than any other candidate.

            If Romano said “Vote for me for Mayor or Freeholder, but not both” then maybe it would be a different story, but the fact remains that he is the only person asking people to vote for an office he has no intention of accepting. He’s planning to disenfranchise one set of voters or another from the start, skipping out on a full term of office.

          • Joshua Einstein

            Ahh the wonderfully refreshing cynicism of the partisan (in your case for DeFusco) who sees nothing hypocritical with his chosen candidate and everything in every other. No moral high ground staking out, I have known Dixon for 5+ years from Republican circles – he is a whip smart attorney and saying so is just observing the facts. Continuing on facts, they remain, despite your protestations, that the consequences of a DeFusco of Giattino Mayoral win are the exact same as that of a win by Romano – special elections Nov 18. How DeFusco and yourself can pretend otherwise and attack Romano on this is inexplicable. More importantly, the voters are smart enough to see through it (as well understand that I have not advocated for anyone but am merely pointing out a spot of hypocrisy).

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