BCDO Convention Results: No Surprises

What I find interesting about last night’s BCDO convention – besides reluctance to put somebody up against Scott Garrett – is that of about 1,350 county committee members, only about 800 showed up to vote, and 14% didn’t bother to vote for McNerney. Ruh-roh! – – promoted by Rosi

This year, the BCDO power players really did panic, but they circled the wagons effectively for their Joe Ferriero candidates.  

The two Congressmen in BCDO territory currently are Garrett and Rothman.  The BCDO put up NOBODY for Garrett’s seat.  They don’t even pretend to care anymore.

First, the preliminary (not verified)  results:

Total votes (voters):  800

McNerney:  710

McGuire:  710

Carroll:  592

Calabrese:  659

Hogan:  620

Belfon:  174

Kovic:  159

McCall:  157

Unspecified number of write-ins for Wilson

District 9:  

Rothman:  479  

District 5: no votes because the BCDO doesn’t want to waste precious money on Congress.

Lets start at the beginning with the event that threw the BCDO into panic.  Freeholder Thomas Padilla announced he is stepping down.  That one event caused an election where a third seat needed to be filled.  When voting for three seats, the top vote getters in the pool get the nod.  You don’t just vote for each seat separately. So, more candidates in the pool, the least popular ones will lose.  Everyone knew that James Carroll, the most identifiable Joe Ferriero supported candidate was the most endangered incumbent this year.  

With Julie O’Brien, the defeated candidate from last year in the mix, as well as the popular Mayor Birkner of Westwood, who was endorsed by Senators Loretta Weinberg and Paul Sarlo, and Maywood Mayor Eustace, as well as Ferriero-crat Cid Wilson in the pool, the chances of a Carroll win went down exponentially.

And so, in order to really make sure that their incumbents were safe, the other candidates were made to sign a promise that they would NOT run in the Dem Primary in June if they lost at the convention.  In fact, they had no choice.  In order to attend the convention and throw their hats in the ring, they had to give up any right to run off the line in the Primary.  

Now the stage is set, to avoid the Dem voters of Bergen County having a choice that wasn’t made for them at 50 Main St. in Hackensack.

BUT, that damned third seat.  They still had to fill it.  What to do, what to do.  They had to PICK the third guy.  That is what Joe would have done.  But this is the NEW BCDO.  Can’t have the sheep thinking that the decision was made for them already.  So, the other candidates start suspiciously dropping like flies.  Eustace, O’Brien, Birkner.  We won’t tell them who to vote for, we’ll just take their choices away in the name of “unity”  which Joe Ariyan brings up while extolling the virtues of Birkner as a “unifier” who puts his party ahead of himself.  That’s BCDO speak for he dropped out due to BCDO pressure.  When O’Brien dropped out and Ariyan read her email at the Candidates Night, she mentioned that Hogan was the Chairman’s pick – to the utter dismay of Kasparian, who was hoping to appear as neutral as Switzerland.

So, OBVIOUS pressure to clear the field for the two incumbents.  Then the snowstorm hits and Hackensack shows a tremendous reluctance to cancel the Convention last Thursday.  After all, the only folks that matter are in Hackensack, THEY can get to the convention.  But after some Committee members call them on it, they relent and reschedule the event to this Thursday.  It is telling that they refused to put up a Candidate against Garrett, because they thought it would boost Rep turnout and hurt their “local” candidates”.  Who knew big Jim Carroll was so precious that he would prevent us from putting up a candidate to possibly win the seat of the Social Darwinist against Evolution?  They obviously like low turnout elections and were hoping there would be one last Thursday, but they had to have a real convention.  

This week, really only three Ferriero-crat choices, and only three non-Ferriero-crat choices.  The goons had their marching orders and they executed perfectly.  The “outsiders” Belfon, McHale, Kovic lost to the “insiders”.

The really interesting thing is the numbers:  

Out of 800 voters, the results show a less than lock step following of orders.  McGuire and McNerney did well, but Hogan, the new candidate got more votes than Carroll.  Carroll would probably NOT have gotten the nod if the others had not dropped out and Hogan was not touted as the Chairman’s pick.  

What I find fascinating is the spread between Calabrese and Carroll.  It appears that their are cracks in the armor there.  Perhaps a realization that dual-office holder Carroll is the most visible standard bearer for the Joe Ferriero legacy.  Some BCDO members appear to realize that the Convention is just one battle.  To win the war, you need to let the voters actually do the choosing in November.

The BCDO thinks they can control everything, right down to making sure there is an uncontested primary, but they cannot control the fact that the Chairman they adored and emulated and loyally followed to the bitter end, is now a convicted felon.  They LOST two seats last year and by not picking a fresh face, they are sealing their fate in November.  

There were reports of some folks voting who did not have the correct paperwork.  However, Lynn Hurwitz and friends stacked the deck enough in their favor that it wouldn’t have changed to outcome.  Joe Ferriero would be proud.

Comments (6)

  1. Bill W

    I was happy to see them using voting machines rather than paper ballots, but that was about the only difference I could see.  When I signed in to get my voting slip, the volunteer staffing the table handed me a palm card. Now that’s chutzpah.  

    The speeches were going on in the next room, and it did sound like some of the candidates were experiencing audio problems while others were not. But I wasn’t in the room, so I can’t tell you if it was intentional sabotage or not.

  2. Carl Bergmanson

    Like pretty-much every NJ County Convention – Democratic and Republican – in recent memory.


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