Click play for audio version of this story
Steven Fulop might not seek re-election to a third term as Mayor of Jersey City in 2021, if the sworn testimony of his wife at a meeting of the Narragansett, Rhode Island Zoning Board of Review is to be interpreted literally.
In seeking a variance to build a new home in the Rhode Island town, Jaclyn Fulop testified that it means a lot to her to eventually raise her family in her hometown, according to a Jersey Journal story that details issues regarding the construction of their waterfront home.
Jaclyn Fulop, who grew up in Narragansett, might have meant that her family would be raised there during the summers. She might also have hinted that the Fulop’s plan to relocate to Rhode Island.
A move to another state might help resuscitate Fulop’s political career.
Almost three years ago, Fulop was the front-runner for the Democratic nomination for governor before his surprise exit from the race. The reasons for his withdrawal have not yet become public.
If Fulop were to move to Rhode Island full-time, he could take his campaign warchests with him to a state where political campaigns are much less expensive to run.
A super PAC he controls, Coalition for Progress, reported more than $3 million cash-on-hand at the end of 2018 after sitting out the mid-term election cycle. The Election Fund of Steven Fulop, his state campaign account, is sitting on a $949,921 warchest, according to a report filed two weeks ago with the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission.
Fulop has been portable in the past. He grew up in Edison and moved to Jersey City after college when he took a Wall Street job. He began his political career shortly after that, winning 12% of the vote against then-Rep. Bob Menendez in the 2004 Democratic House primary.
Moving to a different state to run for office is not unusual. Mitt Romney, the son of the Governor of Michigan, served as Governor of Massachusetts before winning a United States Senate seat in Utah last year.
The Fulop residence has become highly controversial over the last few weeks after Bloomberg reported that a construction firm that has profited off of actions taken by the mayor on Jersey City real estate matters, is building the Fulop home in Narragansett. A line of credit to finance the construction came from Bayonne Community Bank, which Fulop picked to receive “millions of dollars in pension funds” to the bank, according to the Bloomberg story.
Jaclyn Fulop is 162nd on a waiting list for a changing room at the North Pavilion Beach in Narragansett, according to local records. The town website says there is a 5 to 10 year wait for a changing room.
Fulop did not immediately respond to a 1:34 PM direct message seeking comment on his Narragansett residency. If Fulop responds, this story will be updated.