Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Sign of the Times: He came, he saw, he...


conquered?

Not yet. That's the consensus of the barn burning fundraiser for First Ward first year councilman Mike Defusco at Cadillac Cantina last night.

Uptown a competing group of Reform stalwarts appeared for Councilman at-large Ravi Bhalla with his special guest Mayor Dawn Zimmer.

The mayor was seen by this horse at both events. Which one do you think she spent more time?

The entertainment value last night was stellar for too many reasons to list but the buzz was definitely on the side of the downtown event in a packed room full of Old Guard honchos and an assortment of downtown residents, seniors, political operatives and elected officials.

Saddled up with the ever effusive City Clerk Jimmy Farina at the rear bar, the strangest bedfellows made their way by. Joining us for much light-hearted banter Frank "Pupie" Raia, looking svelte and sturdy, better than in recent years. The silver haired fox Perry Belfiore strolled past joking about phone calls with a health related focus.

Pupie joshed more than once asking this Horse if he was running this year. He told others "he's replacing Mello" keeping the joke alive. "Frank, we're executives, we don't run for legislative positions," this horse replied.

That captured the spirit of the event but the underlying intent is serious. If this wasn't a kickoff to an announced run for mayor, it had all the look and feel of one - and all the players.

It was in many respects the most odd political event in almost eight years witnessing same in the Mile Square City. The scent of money just brings everyone together. As one former mayor once reportedly said of Hoboken; it's about money, jobs and power. It does attract a crowd.

The dream ain't dead and neither is the ambition. Lots of ambition in the room. Lots.

Councilman Mike DeFusco addresses a packed crowd in the rear room of Cadillac Cantina last night as the master of
ceremonies Councilman Ruben Ramos looks on.

Talking Ed Note: Lots of familiar faces at the event and many news ones. Sighted by this pony in no particular order: Perry Belfiore, former State Senator Bernie Kenny, Tony Soares, Frank "Pupie" Raia, Eduardo Gonzales, Assemblywoman Annette Chaparro, Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano, Mayor Dawn Zimmer,  Patricia Waiters, Cheryl Fallick, Rory Chadwick, Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher, Joe Mindak, Assemblyman Raj Mukerji and 2009 council candidate on the Peter Cammarano for mayor ticket: Mike Novak.

Hugging it out with everyone in the room except this "law and order" pony, one Carmelo Garcia.
Let's conclude for now saying it was an eclectic crowd. There's more dish on all this.