Former Assemblyman Lou Manzo made his candidacy for mayor of the state’s second largest city official today, saying that the upcoming election will likely be the most important one in Jersey City’s storied history.
“This is going to be the most crucial election probably in the city’s history, not only because of the conditions in the city but because of the present national economic crisis and how it’s going to impact cities like Jersey City,” said Manzo. “I believe that the present leadership – not only the mayor but his apparatus – have demonstrated clearly that they have failed the leadership test and are ill-prepared to serve in what are probably going to be crisis times.”
Manzo plans to run on a platform that highlights economic development, job creation, reform in tax abatement policy and alleviating the city’s crime program through unorthodox methods.
This will be Manzo’s fifth try for the mayor’s office. His most recent try was in 2004. After the sudden death of former Mayor Glenn Cunningham, Manzo narrowly lost to incumbent Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy in a runoff. Last year, he left his assembly seat to run for state senate and was defeated by the late Mayor's widow, Sandra B. Cunningham.
Cunningham is one of Manzo’s potential opponents next year, although observers increasingly doubt she will run (Manzo himself said earlier this year that he would not run if Cunningham did). Healy has already announced that he will run, as has former mayor Bret Schundler, who Manzo ran against in a crowded special election field in 1992, and community activist Dan Levin. Jersey City Ward E Councilman Steve Fulop yesterday said that he will not run for mayor.