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Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, left, with Essex County Democratic Chairman LeRoy Jones, Jr. in 2015. (Photo: Rutgers-Newark.)

Hudson Democrats bid to delay redistricting vote rejected

Tom DeGise says Hudson needs more time to navigate possible Sacco vs. Stack primary

By David Wildstein, February 18 2022 1:08 pm

Hudson County Democrats are making a push to delay a vote by the Legislative Apportionment Commission vote by one week as they deal with the effects of a possible primary between two state senators, North Bergen Mayor Nicholas Sacco and Union City Mayor Brian Stack, but party leaders have rejected their bid.

A meeting of the commission to adopt the new legislative map remains set for 2 PM today, with one redistricting panel member from Hudson County, West New York Commissioner Cosmo Cirillo, set to vote no.

“This matter is far too important for the future of Hudson County and the entire state to be rushed through in a closed process without public input,” said Hudson County Executive Thomas DeGise.  “We must reach a compromise that protects the interests of Hudson County residents along with the rest of the state, but that can only happen if a sufficient amount of time is given to allow the process to continue.  Moving forward with a vote at this time would be absolutely unacceptable.”

His daughter, Hudson County Democratic Chair Amy DeGise, similarly asked for a delay on a conference call with county chairs this afternoon.

Democratic State Chairman LeRoy Jones, Jr., the Democratic redistricting chairman, rejected that.

Jones placed some of the blame on the Sacco vs. Stack matchup on Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, saying his opposition to a plan that would split Jersey City into three different legislative districts left the mapmaking group with no choice but to force two incumbents into a primary.

On Twitter, Fulop called reports  that his letter threatening a lawsuit if Jersey City was split twice as the trigger for the move “absurd.”

“Instead of pointing fingers , the simple solution is just don’t draw a map that could be illegal,” Fulop wrote.  “ If that was the case there would be no reason for me to have written a letter. Do people really expect me not to speak up if something is going to be counter to (Jersey City) interests?

But on the conference call, the New Jersey Globe has confirmed, Jones told county chairs that the court-appointed independent tiebreaker, former Judge Philip Carchman, was reluctant to approve a map that was assured of a court fight.

Cirillo will be joined in opposition to the deal map by a Republican, former Senate Minority Leader Thomas Kean, Jr.

“There should have been more time to negotiate for a fairer map,” Kean said.

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