Arlene Quinones Perez, formerly an attorney with the Carpenters Union, has become a partner with the law firm DeCotiis, Fitzpatrick and Cole, LLC, a move that at the very least has optical political implications.
As a Carpenters counsel in her role as chair of the Hunterdon County Democratic Party, Quinones Perez gave the impression of being closer to ironworker Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) than Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, both of whom are angling for the nomination for governor in 2017. The DeCotiis firm, however, has close ties to Fulop, leading insiders to conclude that Quinones Perez now leans toward Fulop in the ongoing backroom war for influencers and power players in the lead-up to the 2017 gubernatorial contest.
The Hunterdon Democratic chairmanship in and of itself lacks power – it’s a Republican county – but combined with Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean and Somerset the role could create an impact. Whatever impact it has will come without Quinones Perez, who gave up her position as chair of the Hunterdon Democratic Party to start the job at DeCotiis.