The needler in the haystack.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Abdul-Haqq presses 'sore loser' complaint against Mapp


Defeated candidate Abdul-Haqq presses 'sore loser' complaint.

Rasheed Abdul-Haqq, who lost to Plainfield City Council President Adrian Mapp in the June Democratic primary for the Ward 3 nomination, continues to press his 'sore loser' complaint against Mapp, as a story in today's Courier makes clear (see the story 'Mapp resigns housing authority job, avoids federal probe' here).

The Courier article shows how a piece can be factual and misleading at the same time. What the writer does not disclose is that Mapp was in touch with the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), which is charged with enforcing the Hatch Act, all along throughout the primary campaign process, and had written more than once asking the OLC to render an opinion in his case.

When the OLC finally got back to him, Mapp says he cured the complaint by resigning from the East Orange Housing Authority as of July 11, which the OLC confirmed to him in writing.

Unfortunately, the writer of the article does not touch on these facts in recounting the story.

As for Abdul-Haqq, he evidently misunderstands the intent of the Hatch Act altogether (for an overview of the act, see here). What is at stake is a person's job, not their elected office. If the OLC rules that the employee is indeed covered by the Hatch Act, the employee may cure the breach by resigning the job -- as, in fact, Mapp did.

The will of the voters at the ballot box is not touched on by the Act. In fact, the OLC itself is among those spearheading a drive for changes to the Hatch Act. As its director, Carolyn Lerner, said in an OpEd in the New York Times last fall (see here), the Act is too often misused against candidates in local elections.

This whole matter is all the more sad because of the sympathy many of us feel for Abdul-Haqq, who was -- in my opinion, unjustly -- forced off the Board of Education by a law that appeared to be aimed at him personally because of a youthful drug conviction.

Pursuing the Ward 3 Democratic nomination matter only diminishes Abdul-Haqq and makes him appear a sore loser.


-- Dan Damon [follow]

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4 comments:

Bob said...

I was sad for Abdul-Haqq having to leave the BOE and not happy with the one who sponsored this needless bill. I had respect for Mr. Abdul-Haqq, but no longer have any. He is a sore loser, taking advice from jerks who want to control local politics. Mr. Haqq should stop now. He has already ruined any chance he has for political office with he dirty and shameful behavior. Too bad. It was good having someone local to look up to, but Mr. Abdul-Haqq is no longer that person.

Anonymous said...

5Real journalism is dead. This type of article would never have passed the first edit. So sad that our standards have deteriorated to easy answers and readers don't seem to care about facts. So sad.

Anonymous said...

Dear Abdul-Haqq - You exercised your right to run and the people have spoken. You are done. Furthermore, you are not QUALIFIED for such a post. During the Candidates' debate you demonstrated the inability to multi-task and construct and articulate a coherent thought. And your points were absurd. Example, how will you improve Plainfield? "Opening an upscale flea market with solar panels." How would you address the issue with crime? "Opening an upscale flea market with solar panels." What is your favorite color? "Opening an upscale flea market with solar panels." The political startegist who thought you were a viable candidate should leave political strategy to the experts. Courier News - SHAME ON YOU for such a misleading TITLE!!!!!!! You are not keeping the public informed as a real journalist would do! You are MISLEADING the public!

Blackdog said...

Crooked polititions make the other 10% look bad, and this guy wants to replace Sharon? Does this mean that a bad apple is better for you than sour grapes?