The needler in the haystack.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Unhappy Fall of Assemblyman Jerry Green


Congressman Frank Pallone and Asm Jerry Green. (Photo, Courier News)

The Fall campaign season is under way, and Plainfield's Assemblyman Jerry Green has reason not to be happy.

On the one hand, he has not made peace with New Dem Rebecca Williams, who defeated Green's choice in the June Democratic primary election.

Besides the churlish language he indulged in against Williams during the primary, he also accused her of making a rude gesture at him -- which Williams denies -- when she came upon the scene outside his home, where pranksters had lined his sidewalks with Williams' campaign signs.

Though Williams is ready to campaign, she has said she expects Jerry to apologize. The thought of apologizing cannot make the Assemblyman happy.

Then there is the matter of money.

Looks like money will have to be spent on the Fall campaign, and that also
cannot make the Assemblyman happy.

Assemblyman Green, who is also chairperson of the Plainfield Democratic City Committee, has shown no great enthusiasm for an expensive campaign on behalf of his two local candidates -- Williams, running for the Wards 2/3 at-large seat, and Bill Reid, the incumbent running for re-election in Ward 1.

With their high visibility and name-recognition in their respective wards, Green may have figured he could get away without spending any money, especially since most folks are disinclined to do any work for him unless paid to do so.

Williams and Reid may be less of a factor in Green's having to spend money on the Fall election than Congressman Frank Pallone.

Pallone?

The Congressman, to whose district Plainfield was added after the 2000 Census and the subsequent redistricting, has never -- up to now, anyway -- had to pay much attention to Plainfield. And that's about the amount he has given -- the occasional visit, the occasional taxpayer-funded Congressional 'newsletter', the occasional campaign mailer.

But this time around it's different.

Plenty of Democratic Congressional seats around the country are in play this Fall, and it seems that Pallone's may be one of them.

In an August poll, his Tea Party-backed Republican opponent Anna Little (Mayor of Highlands) stood just 6 percentage points behind (see here). That is what they call 'within striking distance'.

Pallone is taking the challenge seriously.

Several readers reported getting phone calls from Assemblyman Green's staff on Sunday, August 29 (one as late as 10:00 PM), beseeching their attendance at an event at the Plainfield Senior Center on Monday the 30th featuring Congressman Pallone.

Turns out that was for the benefit of a CNN segment (as yet unaired) on this Fall's contested Congressional races.

Then, lo and behold, I caught sight of two white men in well-tailored blue blazers, jeans and with open collared dress shirts (they might have been L.L. Bean) striding purposefully through the Art Festival at Library Park this past Saturday.

They stood out not because they were white (there were plenty of white folks there) but because they were a little too preppy, a little too overdressed for the casual crowd.

Drawing closer, I saw that it was Congressman Pallone, presumably with a young staffer, working the crowd. Good for him!

Assemblyman Green was nowhere to be seen.

Campaigning without the Assemblyman is unheard of, and I wondered what that was about.

At any rate, it looks like we'll be seeing more of Congressman Pallone this Fall, perhaps more than we ever have.

And the pressure will be on Assemblyman Green to deliver those much-needed Democratic votes in November.

Just when he thought he was going to get away with a low-cost -- or even no-cost -- campaign.

Exactly how to make an Assemblyman's Fall unhappy.



-- Dan Damon [follow]

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3 comments:

Rob said...

such a teaser headline...Damn you Dan!! LOL

Anonymous said...

Regardless of the teaser headline, Green's days are surely numbered. Word on the street is that Christie sees Plainfield as a great opportunity to demonstrate how ineffective and wasteful some local municipalities are. This will be part of his effort to push reform legislation this fall.

He has also become increasingly aware of the gang violence and shenanigans at City Hall. Look for him to single out Plainfield as a prime example of waste, poor leadership and patronage jobs which has become the systemic cancer in New Jersey.

Maybe it’s time for Jerry to cash in his chips and head for the border. When all is said and done, the trail surely leads back to him.

Anonymous said...

Jerry Green is an embarrassment to Plainfield. He must and the mayor must GO!!!!! Frank Pallone would be smart in separating himself from Green. I will not vote for anyone Jerry Green endorses.