Schundler Stands with Fulop

JERSEY CITY – Steve Fulop is staking out a pretty liberal agenda as he gears up for next year’s gubernatorial campaign.

Bret Schundler, who preceded Fulop as Jersey City mayor by about 20 years or so, was anything but liberal.

Such details, one supposes, don’t always matter.

The Fulop campaign on Wednesday sent out a release trumpeting endorsements from 21 former mayors “representing eleven counties and a mixture of urban and suburban communities throughout the state. The endorsers include the three most recent living former mayors of Jersey City, as well as major figures from Bergen, Essex and Union counties and several other key areas of the state.”

All well and good, but the eyebrow raising part here is that one of the former Jersey City mayors now on Team Fulop is Schundler, a Republican, who was city mayor from 1992 to 2001. Fulop, of course,is a Democrat.

A spokesman for Fulop said the connection between the two men has more to do with a personal relationship and friendship than it does with policy agreement.

He said Schundler is also impressed with the city’s ongoing revitalization. The city’s downtown and waterfront area is especially vibrant.

It may be ancient history to some, but Schundler gave up his city hall job to run for governor in 2001. He won that year’s GOP primary as the conservative candidate in the race. That didn’t help him much in the general election, where he lost handily to Jim McGreevey, who now wants to be Jersey City mayor himself. Talk about politics going round and round.

Schundler tried again for governor in 2005, but never made it past the primary, which was won by Doug Forrester.

Schundler’s most infamous moment in state government came in 2010 when he was named Education Commissioner by then-Governor Chris Christie.

In the summer of that year, the state lost out on a possible $400,000 federal education grant in the “Race To The Top” program, partly because its application was incomplete.

Christie said at the time that Schunder misled him about why the state lost the grant. When Schundler didn’t resign, the governor fired him.

Notwithstanding that adventure, Schundler has remained active in education and was a founder in 2012 of the BelovED Community Charter School in Jersey City, which seems to be a rousing success.

Moving to the present, Fulop said:

“We’ve built this campaign around grassroots support along with mayors who best understand what their communities and constituents need. Today’s announcement of endorsements from twenty-one respected former mayors continues that commitment.”

Besides Schundler, the other former Jersey City mayors endorsing Fulop are Jerramiah Healy and L. Harvey Smith.

Here is the full list of endorsers, including their towns and counties:

Mark Smith – Bayonne (Hudson)

Chris Chung – Palisades Park (Bergen)
Tim Eustace – Maywood (Bergen)
Frank Huttle – Englewood (Bergen)
Andrew LaBruno – Dumont (Bergen)
Eldridge Hawkins – East Orange (Essex)
Raymond McCarthy – Bloomfield (Essex)
Frank McGehee – Maplewood (Essex)
Collette Kennedy – Keyport (Monmouth)
Pat Menna – Red Bank (Monmouth)
Tom Jardim – Westfield (Union)
Sara Todisco – Garwood (Union)
Jesse Tweedle – Pleasantville (Atlantic)
Jacqueline Jennings – Willingboro (Burlington)
Betsy Driver – Flemington (Hunterdon)
Julie Blake – Hopewell Township (Mercer)
Keith Balla – Watchung (Somerset)
Stephen Ellis – Phillipsburg (Warren)



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3 responses to “Schundler Stands with Fulop”

  1. And, that’s why I’m leaving New Jersey. It’s a uni-party system in this state starting with the literal Elephant in the Room–Chris Christie. First, Christie goes all-Socialist and wants to stop Trump’s election, then Guadagno (Christie’s LG) becomes a turncoat. And, now Schundler. New Jersey is a failed state. It’s no wonder that it leads the nation in many negative things: New Jersey is No. 1 in people leaving a state for low or no tax and friendlier rights’ states. NJ is No. 1 for highest property taxes in the nation. NJ is No. 4 in highest income taxes in the nation. NJ is No. 8 in highest sales taxes in the nation. NJ is highest regulations against small businesses in the nation. New Jersey is No. 1 for unaffordability for young families, causing young families to leave NJ for better quality of life and better living standards.

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