Gov. Phil Murphy (D) and New Jersey Democratic State Committee Chair LeRoy Jones endorsed Albio Sires and his for running mates in the non-partisan May 9th election despite the inclement weekend weather.
By Daniel Ulloa/Hudson County View
“We have the support of New Jersey’s top leadership. These are true friends that come to you in your time of need. That’s what this party is about. That is what column B is about. That is what Albio Sires’ team is about,” West New York Mayor Gabriel Rodriguez declared to great applause.
Rodriguez, Sires’ godson, is running for a state Assembly seat in the 33rd Legislative District instead of seeking re-election, opening up the possibility for Sires to return to his first elected office that he held between 1995 and 2006.
The incumbent mayor also praised Murphy’s leadership through the COVID-19 pandemic, saying he was “in constant contact with me and many of the mayors of Hudson to make sure we got we needed.”
As for Jones, he called Sires “a hero” to the West New York community, joking that he still has serious skills on the court, referring to his playing days at St. Peter’s University.
“This is the reckoning. This is the time we have to go out and let our voices be heard. This is a great day, ladies and gentlemen, with a lot of rain. But every cloud has a silver lining,” Jones exclaimed, also stressing the importance to vote.
Jones then introduced state Senator (D-33)/Union City Mayor Brian Stack, calling him an “excellent humanitarian” and one of the great elected leaders in Hudson County” to great applause.
“The energy and excitement here is great. But we need to carry this every day through Tuesday, May 9th. We have to talk to our friends, our family, and work every single day from now until the election,” Stack, who endorsed Sires back in January, asserted.
“Starting Monday, I will be in West New York every single night through election day. I’m going to live in West New York! There is no better team!” he exclaimed.
“West New York couldn’t have better leadership than the candidates on the ballot right now with Albio Sires: It’s not about building a political machine. It’s not about taking outside influence into West New York. It’s about doing what’s right for the West New York residents.”
He stressed that throughout his career in politics as mayor, state Assembly speaker, and then an eight-term congressman, Sires has always cares about his constituents.
“Who else would leave Congress and say I want to back and serve my hometown again as I did before? We need to get every vote out for Column B in West New York,” Stack, who is running unopposed in the June 6th primary, added.
As for Murphy, he said that Sires has the experience and knowledge of West New York needed to lead the town forward.
“He’ll take this community to new heights. Experience matters. This is no time in this world in the way it is with this economy, with inflation, with our recovery from the pandemic. This is not the time to give this community to an untested leader. You need the steely veteran presence that Albio Sires and this whole lineup bring,” the governor stressed.
“I want to say unequivocally that the $65 million that is set aside for the SDA (NJ School Development Authority) is set aside for one single purpose and that is to build a school on Broadway between 64th and 65th [Streets] … Remember one thing when anyone says otherwise, tell ’em Murphy said the following: It’s my money, and that’s how it’s gonna be spent!”
Like Rodriguez, Sires praised Murphy’s pandemic response and also thanked him for his commitment to bringing a new school to town before introducing his ticket: Commissioner Victor Barrera, former BOE Trustrees Adam Parkinson and Marielka Diaz, with the slate rounded out with recent Republican congressional candidate Marcos Arroyo.
“This is a non-partisan election, and I want to make sure everyone has a voice in my government. So that’s why he’s here,” Sires said about Arroyo, who challenged Sires’ eventual successor in the House, Rob Menendez, in last November’s general election.
Sires also noted they built affordable housing in four locations in town during his tenure as mayor.
“I want to thank my wife for allowing me to do this. I carry West New York in my heart. I love this town,” he added.
Sires was the Congressman representing Hudson County since 2005 before being succeeded by Rob Menendez Jr. to the seat in January. He was previously the Mayor of West New York for several years.
While Sires endorsed the “New Beginnings West New York” ticket in 2019, which included Rodriguez along with Commissioners Cosmo Cirillo and Margarita Guzman, Cirillo is heading the “West New York Forward” ticket this time around with Guzman running with him.
Hudson County Sheriff Frank Schillari, Hudson County Executive candidate Craig Guy, Weehawken Mayor Richard Turner, and Hudson County Commissioner Anthony Romano (D-5) were also present to support Sires.