GA spoke to Ear Wax, a Dark Side informant who like the substance he's named after, is deep on the inside and can't be reached with a Q-Tip.
But GA knows where to find Ear Wax and boy, did he give me an earful.
From my notes:
Hmmm. Not surprising at all. Da Horsey wrote today:There are serious doubts out there about Tim Occhipinti among the people that actually deliver the votes. If Timmy doesn't check himself he may find that the people that deliver are going to be delivering to someone else and not Mr. Occhipinti.He's a phony candidate, picked out of nowhere because they needed someone to run against Mike Lenz.Tim's thinking that he has special sauce as a Councilman and he doesn't. There's nothing special that he brings to his position as council person.Timmy doesn't know how to finesse anything. He doesn't know how to work the system so he shows up in public and jeopardizes them all by lobbying at the zoning board when his vote was needed at the council. Basically, he threw away his vote. He's got to recuse himself now.Even Mike knew he was out of control at the CC and had to jump in (heated exchange with Councilman Mello). The problem is he thinks he actually won the election, his ego and stupid pet tricks at the City Council meeting have not ingratiated himself with the folks that run the 4th ward.These people have no long term ties or allegiance to him. He's been a useful tool and one that can be easily replaced.You never see Tim with Pupie. Pupie doesn't need Tim. Tim needs Pupie.Pupie can find someone else.
"Sources say Occhipinti is also not getting along with Councilman Michael Russo who is most definitely not getting behind a Occhipinti for Mayor candidacy."Which is consistent with what I've been hearing. It makes sense.
Because Timmy is not in the same league as Mike Russo, not even close.
He's the ant dwarfed by the proverbial giant when it comes to Russo's brains, savvy, ability to think on his feet, ability to react to changing circumstances, ability to seize on a message and steer it, and most importantly understands the boundaries between political theater and behavior offstage.
Offstage, Russo is affable and charming- to everyone.
Offstage, Tim is confrontational, obnoxious, surly- to the 'other side'.
Tim sits through CC meetings (I'm told) muttering and mumbling non-sequiturs to those near him, he provoked Mello during a break by asserting he wasn't a 'real' HHA commissioner because he chose to spend Father's Day weekend with his own Father, privately provoked Greg Lincoln that he "hadn't attended a single HHA meeting".
This kind of surly rudeness is not how Russo rolls. One may be civil privately to those who one wants to thrash politically which Occhipinti doesn't get.
No, Timmy is crushed beneath the weight of Russo's political skills and it's got to irk the crap out of Russo that this lightweight (the Champion of the People's Right to Spit) is the one anointed to advance.
Conventional wisdom says that the FBI surveillance tape snuffed out Russo's mayoral aspirations. That may be true, but... anyone remember the story of Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry?
His celebrity transformed into international notoriety in January 1990, when Barry was videotaped smoking crack cocaine and arrested by FBI officials on drug charges. The arrest and subsequent trial precluded Barry seeking re-election, and Barry served six months in a federal prison. After his release, however, he was elected to the D.C. city council in 1992 and ultimately returned to the mayoralty in 1994, serving from 1995 to 1999.
|Pass the pipe, Marion! Re-elected mayor AFTER caught on F.B.I. surveillance tape smoking crack!|
Before the emails and texts come in...
GA is NOT suggesting EQUIVALENCY between crack smoking and agreeing to a $5,000 bribe from a fake developer or D.C. and Hoboken or Barry and Russo.
My point is that if committing a serious offense on FBI tape is the determining factor of whether the film-star later runs for mayor, well... it's been done at least that once! Probably more.
I'll bet the halls of local, state and national government are filled with crooks or those caught on F.B.I. surveillance tape!
Betcha when former La. Congressman William Jefferson gets out of jail for keeping all that cash in the freezer next to his fudge pops, he runs again! Why not?
Remember the guy with the pineapple hairdo- Ohio Congressman James Traficant? He was "expelled after being convicted of taking bribes, filing false tax returns, racketeering, and forcing his aides to perform chores at his farm in Ohio and on his houseboat in Washington, D.C.." In 2009 he was released from jail after serving 7 years.
Guess what he did next?
Ran for Congress in 2010! Never mind the pineapple hair, the guy's got balls like coconuts.
Is Hoboken really any different?
You've got members of the City Council who 'cleared-up' 4 million missing quarters, the crew who used the Hoboken BoE as a slush fund in years past engineering a BoE ticket (Markevitch-Oland) while they circle the HHA like hungry buzzards.
So, GA doesn't scoff at the notion that a video of a teensy-weensy $5,000 bribe acceptance caught on F.B.I. surveillance tape along with some major braggadocio is enough to kill a dream.
Not in Hoboken!
So back to Timmy... will the Dark Side dump him? GA hopes not.