Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Jerry Green resigns Union County Dem chair. What's next?

Chairman Green at a 2013 fundraiser.

Jerry Green has resigned as chairperson of the Union County Democratic Committee. The word came in a press release issued by the county party's executive director Nick Fixmer in an emailed press release late Wednesday afternoon.

Word had started circulating earlier in the afternoon, and InsiderNJ's Max Pizarro had posted a story at 2:22 PM on the rumored resignation and Sen. Nick Scutari's working the phones for support as Green's replacement -- beating the official announcement by almost two hours.

The "official" reason given in the press release is a "longer-than-expected recovery process" from an unspecified illness. I regard that statement as a continuation of the denial and disinformation that Jerry's office has been putting out since before the November election.

As I wrote earlier, when I was in JFK's cardiac unit in October, visitors reported seeing Jerry a few doors from me on the same ward -- as a patient. Jerry is seriously ill -- this resignation is another indicator -- and no one knows whether or if he will be able to return to his duties in the Assembly.

The resignation has kicked off a race for the Union County Dem Committee chairmanship between Sen. Nick Scutari (who has already garnered major support from Elizabeth, Linden and Plainfield) and Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr, who is vice chair of the county committee and succeeds Green as acting chair, according to the group's by-laws.

Mahr has received rough treatment at the hands of Green in the past, being passed over for the Assembly seat resigned by Linda Stender after her husband brought opprobrium on her when his Sandy-related scandal came to light.

I had a long conversation with Mahr after Jerry passed her over in favor of former Rahway mayor Jim Kennedy. She made no secret of her feeling that she had been unfairly treated by Green (and others), and now appears to have aligned herself with Union County's newest state Senator, former Sheriff Joe Cryan.

The county party chairmanship is not all that is at stake.

Looking down the road, it seems clear that if Jerry Green's health does not improve he will be facing pressure from colleagues in the Legislature to step aside there as well.

Max Pizarro at InsiderNJ has put forward his analysis of the maneuvering now going on (for his view, see here). As he sees it, Plainfield Mayor Adrian Mapp -- who was close to Cryan in the run-up to Gov. Murphy's election -- is now aligning himself with Sen. Scutari, with an eye to Green's Assembly seat if/when it becomes available.

Looks like things are going to get politically pretty interesting in Plainfield pretty damn quick.

  -- Dan Damon [follow]
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