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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

All Systems Go!

Updated: 5:45.

In what looks suspiciously like a green light to run again for Hoboken Office of Mayor, Councilwoman Beth Mason's political consultant, Paul Swibinski, the former campaign manager to the Cammarano mayoral campaign is indicating it may be all systems go based on a report from Hoboken Now earlier today.

The unofficial answer may come as soon as later today, based on the typical needed electioneering machinations but things may officially simmer until early next week based on Beth's official statement posted by the Hoboken Journal.

We're not surprised Beth Mason has the taste to go for the gold again as the flavor of the last mayoral race is certainly not gone. We do however question her judgment in doing so as we expected a Russo machine candidate to make the first move along with Frank "Pupie" Raia. Perhaps Beth's polling data shows some operating room since the Governor's race in November is anticipated to add thousands of new votes to the race held last spring. Those votes will certainly be up for grabs.

But this leads to the real question of the moment: is this an early salvo to discourage a Russo candidate or has a deal been cut (again) over the long holiday weekend? Councilwoman Terry Castellano was quoted Thursday in Hoboken Now saying a candidate would be confirmed by Monday after polling data was analyzed but she added that no conversations were even taking place with Beth Mason. Has that analysis suggested standing behind a potential queen is better than standing alone? Beth Mason lost a sizable number of reform minded voters when she signed on to the status quo pilot extension at Church Towers. That vote certainly didn't show up and deliver last time and can any assurances it will this time be believed? Well, in Hoboken alliances are often temporary and ever shifting, and Beth Mason has the powers of the purse. Money does talk volumes, and those votes that were on the whole picked up by adopted son Peter Cammarano will need to find a new home.

After the marathon of last week's Council meeting, the language in Beth Mason's statement is eerily similar to the assault by the Russo coalition of Councilwoman Terry Castellano and Councilmen Mike Russo toward the tail end of the five hour plus saga. During that harangue, Beth Mason sat rather glumly and was not very animated throughout. But during a late five minute break, she was very much so as the camera man followed her vigorous pantomime of protest to Acting Mayor and City Council President Dawn Zimmer in one of the many disputes that evening. Coincidence?

If Beth Mason's campaign utilizes the dual office holder theme to attack the Acting Mayor, it would come as no surprise. Dawn Zimmer as Acting Mayor has generally received good marks for appointing professionals and showing restraint in curbing spending, even in the Mayor's office itself.

Paul Swibinski who headed up the Cammarano mayoral bid last May, used all resources rather well, even confusing enough of the electorate to view Cammarano as both competent and for "real change." Boosting the Acting Mayor's negatives is one way to narrow the deficit, but how to frame her campaign platform? We certainly don't believe it will be around the northwest concept plan as after its introduction, hostility was widespread to such an idea around town for a whole host of reasons from the current budget woes to the flooding problems. That leaves Beth's much trumped experience where titles of management consultant abound, but what of achievements?

No doubt we'll be updating shortly on the official Beth Mason 2.0 mayoral campaign.
But we wonder who will be standing at the announcement as her new campaign manager? Or has Paul Swibinski deposited that check too?

Our prediction for this race: expect more dirt than sizzle.

Hat tip: Carly Baldwin, Hoboken Now
Photo: Courtesy Carly Baldwin/Hoboken Now

Just for laughs:
Last (again) to the big dance, Hoboken 411 offers this on Paul Swibinski, "You might remember Swibinski - as he supported Dawn Zimmer in her race against Chris Campos - as well as did all the campaign literature for Carol Marsh when she ran for Assembly."

Can someone fill him in on what Paul was doing in Hoboken earlier this year?