The Business of the City: Miscellaneous

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Rumors of "Unintentional...Bracketing" and Collusion


Rumors of "COLLUSION" and/or a "FIX" on the part of certain individuals have been spreading like wildfire throughout Union County since an article on "bracketing" in CD-12 story was published on Friday.  


There was an interesting article posted on Friday's edition of PolitickerNJ, the online journal for political junkies in our state. I have highlighted the portion that I find most troubling.

Dan Damon wrote about this strange article on his blog yesterday--see that here. I have a few comments to make about things that struck me as very strange. I have posted the article in its entirety below:

CD12 and Plainfield
Watch Plainfield in the 12th Congressional District contest on June 3rd.
Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-15) will potentially benefit from a brutal local rivalry where Mayor Adrian Mapp is fighting Assemblyman Jerry Green (D-22) with three local council seats at stake.
A highly locally motivated Green and Mapp both want those local wins, and they both back Watson Coleman for Congress.
The one possible hang-up for Mapp may be the unintentional off-the-line ballot bracketing of Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula (D-17) with Mapp's candidates.
In that case, Mapp will have the mechanical challenge of reminding voters to vote for Watson Coleman - who's running on the Union County line - while maintaining their allegiance to local New Democrat candidates opposed to Green's Union County democratic Party-backed candidates.
In that case, Mapp will have the mechanical challenge of reminding voters to vote for Watson Coleman - who's running on the Union County line - while maintaining their allegiance to local New Democrat candidates opposed to Green's Union County democratic Party-backed candidates.
First of all, the New Democrats for Plainfield has its own slogan--New Democrats for Plainfield. As Dan correctly pointed out, we are running our off-the-line Democratic campaign under our own slogan, as we have always done. In order to "bracket" with any other group, both groups have to agree to be bracketed.

I will point out that, back in 2009, when we did attempt to bracket with a group of independent Democrats who were running county candidates:

County Clerk Rajoppi herself denied the bracketing, saying that we could not.  

We were then placed in Column F. Interestingly, the previous year (2008), the clerk placed Adrian Mapp in the SAME column that his opponent (Olive Lynch) was in--Column E. Back then, she gave the reason that the ballot would be too crowded if she added an additional column. Many thought that this was a deliberate attempt to confuse voters--there was no need for this sort of "placement," which certainly favored the county candidates.

How, then, in the following year, could she have created SIX columns and placed the New Dems in Column F if, in 2008, FIVE columns were the maximum? This is one of the questions I was asked--I don't know, is my answer right now. There have often been many more columns in the past.
 
Thus, the suggestion that we may be unintentionally bracketed with Assemblyman Chivikula is a thoroughly erroneous one, and I am sure that County Clerk Rajoppi, with whom I have had a good relationship as a councilwoman and as an officer of the League of Women Voters of Plainfield, will correct the record.

Further, we have endorsed Bonnie Watson Coleman--it should be considered a violation of our right to association to force us into placement in the same column with someone whom we are NOT supporting, and of this Rajoppi must certainly be aware.

So, how then, could a rumor exist that we would be bracketed or placed (against our will and in violation of our slogan) in a column or on a line with a candidate with whom we are NOT affiliated?
  
To add another bizarre omission to the PolitickerNJ story, no mention was made of the other Democratic candidate, Linda Greenstein, or the other candidate, Andrew Zwicker. If any discussion of "bracketing" was underway, why wouldn't at least the third Democratic candidate for CD-12, Linda Greenstein (who is said to be in a statistical dead heat with Coleman in current polls), be mentioned?
 
Why would the rumor be only about "unintentional bracketing" with Upendra Chivukula?

It is here that the suspicions arise, that rumors of a potential "fix" have come to the surface regarding this election. That only Chivukula (and not Greenstein) is mentioned suggests some sort of attempt at "trickery."

For anyone to attempt to force bracketing upon local candidates by putting them in a column with those whom they are not supporting brings with it hints and murmurs of collusion. The rumors can only be abated by County Clerk Rajoppi, who can clarify that there will be no bracketing or "placement" with candidates we are not running with.


We are supportive of Bonnie Watson Coleman, as noted in Mayor (and former New Democrat President) Adrian Mapp's endorsement of her, as well as from my own endorsement. 

Again, the New Democrats for Plainfield filed petitions under our own slogan. We are not bracketing with ANYONE for this primary election, and will be running in our own column. 

Further, any attempts to "place" us in columns with other off-the-line candidates will be seen for the political machination that it is--the people will not stand for transparent game-playing by the bosses!

All best,

Rebecca

1 comment:

  1. They say a picture is worth a thousand words so is it possible to make a proforma ballot based on what this is all about? It must be significant with all these words floating around.

    ReplyDelete