Ruben's Helping Hand

Up in smoke?

If yesterday's Earwitness rumor is correct, and Ruben Ramos was instrumental in herding Carmelo Garcia to Stack's ticket, one might ask: what's in it for him (Ramos)?

The two men are close friends, yes.  But Garcia has a lot more to offer than friendship.

One can assume he will do everything possible to 'deliver' the HHA for Ruben.  That's a tidal wave of votes like the kind that washed Tim Occhipinti onto the City Council in November 2010.

 Remember that race?  
(estimated $22,000) That's how much his opponent Tim Occhipinti spent on "campaign workers" to win Ward 4's Council seat in November. What's unusual about that? Well, nothing, until you consider that there were about 575 of them, and that for all that Election Day "field" help there was little Occhipinti campaign presence visible on 4th Ward streets (say the Lenz folks). And that Occhipinti paid 575 workers for an election in which only 2,076 people cast ballots (Lenz Election Day paid workers = 17). Most alarming is a spike - a big one - in vote-by-mail ballots, and who it was who turned them in: overwhelmingly it was Occhipinti's "campaign workers"... In 2 Ward 4 districts, about 80% of absentee voters were also employed by the Occhipinti campaign.
Yesterday GA posted that the Carmelo pick was a big F-U to Mayor Zimmer and Ravi Bhalla

Well, I'd also call it an F-U to aspiring mayoral candidate Tim Occhipinti and his mentor, Beth Mason: Buh-bye to Timmy's HHA base and GOTV infrastructure.


Mason has the means to offer more than Ruben... if Tim does run, will  a 'bidding war' commence over in the 4th ward?

Ruben's influence on Stack's ticket shows he's got muscle in spite of the dismissive treatment his candidacy's been given in Hoboken's local media and blogs.  Yep, it's definitely a finger directed at Mason.

GA hears she's blaming Zimmer for the choice of Garcia- which is hilarious. Not only don't events back this up, there is no logical rationale for Zimmer to have done so.  None.  Zimmer has unconditionally supported Bhalla for Assembly from Day One.

More, rumor has it there's another Council minority member who (till) really wants to run for mayor.

Terry Castellano.  I've heard she believes she can prevail, that she despises Zimmer almost as much as Mason- which is a lot.  It's only March. She's got plenty of time to jump in.

And Timmy?  GA heard he is serious about running and (also) thinks he can win.  But without the HHA harvest he had in 2010 and 2011, it will be that much harder.