Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop is refusing to endorse Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise for re-election next year, saying that the 2019 election “is a lifetime away.”
Fulop said in a Tweet on Wednesday that he is “hyper focused on very local stuff” and that he’s “not as engaged in county politics” and “not really venturing outside my lane.”
Source say that Fulop and Union City Mayor Brian Stack think it’s time for DeGise to go. The five-term County Executive has faced considerable criticism for his response to five deaths at the Hudson County jail over the last eight months.
A former Jersey City council candidate, Jake Hudnut, has urged Fulop to take an active role in fixing problems at the jail.
“This issue is not far outside his wheelhouse,” Hudnut said in a Jersey Journal column. “His administration has demonstrated a progressive commitment to re-entry and job placement for offenders returning from jail and prison. That’s an important cause, but it’s meaningless if the conditions in these facilities are such that re-entry into society becomes a moot point.”
Fulop has never been shy about engaging in county issues before, and as a city official for more than twelve years, he’s had plenty of time to form an opinion of DeGise’s record.
There is speculation in Hudson that Fulop wants a political ally, Freeholder Bill O’Dea, to replace the 66-year-old DeGise.