Dublin launches Jersey City freeholder campaign against old rival Balmir


After losing a competitive off-the-line race in 2014, former Jersey City Freeholder Jeff Dublin has officially launched his 2017 campaign, looking to unseat old rival and incumbent Gerard Balmir (D-3).

Hudson County Democratic Organization Executive Director John Minella, who served as the emcee for the evening, said he considers Dublin “a brother” and praised his continued service to the Jersey City community.

Grabbing the mic as the DJ played LL Cool J’s “Mama Said Knock You Out,” Dublin thanked all his friends and family for their continued support, going on to say that he’s looking forward to have “a home grown” candidate representing the third freeholder district again.

Jermaine Robinson, a long rumored Ward F council candidate, referred to Dublin as “a warrior for our community” who has always been very responsive.

Jersey City Deputy Mayor Marcos Vigil also spoke on Dublin’s behalf, referring to him as “our next freeholder,” indicating that the Mayor Steven Fulop administration is backing his candidacy this time around.

Balmir received Fulop’s support in 2014, but that now seems like ancient history ever since the freeholder’s wife took a job with state Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) almost exactly a year ago.

At the time, Fulop denounced Balmir for being “disloyal and dishonest” to the local Democratic party.

Finally, veteran Jersey City Freeholder Bill O’Dea (D-2), an expected mayoral candidate (who was jokingly introduced as the next county executive) before Fulop announced he would not run for governor on Wednesday, explained how his friendship with Dublin has grown over the years.

When asked what his plans were in light of Fulop’s surprising announcement to again run for mayor, O’Dea would only say “I’m definitely running for office in 2017.”

Balmir did not return a call or text message seeking comment.

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