Connect with us


Hudson County Democratic Organization Put on Notice After Menendez’s Pyrrhic Victory & JC HCDO’s Pathetic GOTV Operation



In the wake of last night’s primaries, the Hudson County Democratic Organization (HCDO) finds itself at a critical juncture. Although Rob Menendez Jr. emerged victorious overall, defeating Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla, the results expose significant vulnerabilities within the HCDO, particularly in Jersey City.

The most striking revelation from the primary was Menendez’s poor performance in Jersey City, where he secured only 31% of the vote compared to Bhalla’s commanding 60%. This outcome signals a shift in political power in Hudson County’s largest city, raising questions about the influence and effectiveness of the HCDO.

Menendez’s victory was buoyed by strong support from North Hudson, underscoring the “boss ego” divide in political allegiances. However, this win is marred by his dismal showing in Jersey City, which historically has been a stronghold for county-supported candidates. The underperformance in Jersey City is concerning and indicates a potential fracture within the HCDO’s base.

Ward E Councilman James Solomon and Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop emerged as significant players in this primary. Solomon’s endorsement of Bhalla and Fulop’s decision to withhold endorsement from Menendez undoubtedly impacted the election’s outcome.

Solomon, in particular, has positioned himself as a rising star with a substantial support base, reminiscent of Fulop’s ascension in 2011 and 2012 when he successfully challenged county-supported candidates.

The primary results suggest that Jersey City’s electorate is increasingly independent, resistant to county-backed endorsements, and possibly more progressive. This shift could have profound implications for future elections. The inability of Jersey City’s HCDO committee people to galvanize support for Menendez signifies their diminishing influence and highlights the need for introspection and strategic realignment within the organization.

The HCDO must acknowledge that Jersey City is no longer a guaranteed bastion of support for its candidates. The upcoming 2025 municipal races are likely to be fiercely contested, with progressivism, organizational strength, and financial backing playing crucial roles. Solomon’s demonstrated ability to mobilize support positions him as a potential frontrunner for the 2025 mayoral race, should he choose to run.

Moving forward, the HCDO must recognize that the Jersey City faction requires rebranding and revitalization. The systemic issues now in plain view demand strategic adjustments and a deeper engagement with the evolving political sentiments of Jersey City’s electorate.

While Menendez’s victory secures his position, the broader implications for the HCDO are far from positive. The clock is ticking on the careers of some within the HCDO, and the organization needs to adapt to the changing political landscape swiftly.

This weekend, I will delve deeper into the real losers of the primary and how the double-dipping patronage produced zero winners.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this column are solely those of Bruce (The Chronicler in Chief) and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of HudPost or its editorial staff.