NEWARK – It was unclear tonight whether former Central Ward Councilwoman Dana Rone had absolutely not determined to pursue the council seat she once held now that former Gov. Jon Corzine yesterday in one of his last official acts lifted the ban on her being able to seek public office.
But fellow Newarkers who believed too tough the initial penalty a judge imposed on Rone as a consequence of her actions during a 2006 traffic stop, applauded Corzine for pardoning the Central Ward politician.
“The fight for Dana was to have the lifetime ban removed,” said Assemblywoman L. Grace Spencer (D-Newark). “That penalty was far more severe than the offense warranted. Governor Corzine did the right thing by lifting it.”
“She’s my sister, and there’s a big sigh of relief from emotion right now, but to go from that to jump into a race, for me personally, I don’t know if I could do that, and I don’t know if I would have that kind of fortitude,” said West Ward Councilman Ronald C. Rice, a longtime Rone ally who twice ran for office with the Central Warder as a member of the Booker Team.
“I’ve always been behind her,” added Rice. “In my mind’s eye, what Governor Corzine did was justice. Whatever she decides to do, she now has choices.”