Hillary Clinton’s car hits concrete pole in Jersey City

Menendez enlists former Secretary of State in his effort to seek reelection

A car transporting Hillary Clinton to a fundraiser in Jersey City hit a concrete poll in a local parking garage on Monday, Oct. 15. Clinton, who came to Jersey City to help raise campaign funds for U.S Sen. Robert Menendez, was not injured.

The 2016 presidential candidate, former secretary of state and first lady to President Bill Clinton appeared at the Liberty Prime Steakhouse on Montgomery Street, two blocks from City Hall and from Exchange Place when the vehicle in which she was a passenger made a left turn into an underground garage and struck a pole.

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The police report said the driver of Clinton’s vehicle drove into the Little Man Parking garage, at 127 Montgomery St., which had a marked clearance height bar.

“The driver stated her vehicle earlier cleared the entrance, but when she drove farther into the parking garage, she struck a concrete cross beam that was not marked with its height,” the report said.

All five passengers, the report said, refused medical attention.

The report listed three of the passengers as government employees, including members of the U.S. Secret Service.

The driver is listed as living in Chappaqua, N.Y., where Clinton has lived since she and her husband left the White House in 2001.

The report said the vehicle was “self insured.”

Clinton then walked to the nearby steakhouse to take part in the $2,500 per ticket event.

The Jersey City accident raised a lot of chatter on Twitter and other social media sites, mostly humorous comments such as “Clinton runs into the Trump wall.”

Members of the Green Party supporting Madelyn Hoffman against Democrat Menendez and Republican Bob Hugin protested out in front as Clinton entered.

Menendez in an extremely tight race with Hugin

The campaign has been rated by some anti-GOP websites such as The Nation’s “Talking Points” as one of the nastiest in the nation.

Menendez, a senator since 2006, was indicted in 2015 on corruption charges by a Justice Department overseen by then Democratic President Barrack Obama. Some believe the case was in retaliation against Menendez, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee at the time, for his opposition to Obama’s policies on Cuba and Iran.

The judge in the case dismissed the most serious charges after a jury in December 2017 could not come up with a unanimous verdict. In early 2018, the Department of Justice under Republican President Donald Trump decided not to pursue the case.

Menendez, however, was chastised by the Senate last April based on some of the issues involved in the case. But Menendez campaign officials point out that this was the mildest reprimand the Senate could have issued.

Lisa McCormack, who ran against Menendez in the primary, was able to capitalize on the case to win nearly 30 percent of the Democratic primary vote in June.

This suggested a weakness which Hugin has capitalized on with a continuing barrage of ads, although the latest attack appears to rely on claims that were not allowed to be raised during the court case.

A Quinnipiac University poll released on Oct. 16 showed Menendez with 51 percent of those polled to 44 for Hugin.

Clinton’s appearance in Jersey City was designed to both raise money and bolster Menendez’s profile among likely Democratic voters, although published accounts claim a Gallup poll done in September show Clinton with a 36 percent approval rating.

Several rallies have been held in Hudson County on behalf of Menendez, including a party on the west side of Jersey City earlier in October.

A confident Rep. Albio Sires, who is running against three candidates in a race to retain his seat in the House of Representatives, said his job is to make sure voters in his district come out for Menendez.

While Menendez can rely on most of the mayors and public officials in Hudson County, including state senators and mayors Nicholas Sacco and Brian Stack, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop has been absent from any of the Menendez events.

Hugin appears to have significant support in Bayonne, Secaucus and perhaps even Hoboken, but it may not be enough to offset the powerful Democratic push in support of Menendez.

The election will take place on Nov. 6.

To comment on this story on-line, go to our website, www.hudsonreporter.com. Al Sullivan may be reached at asullivan@hudsonreporter.com


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