“New Beginnings” slate wins the West New York municipal election

Rodriguez, Cirillo, Guzman, Yanez, Barrera clearcut winners in unofficial tally

The “New Beginnings West New York” slate was the winner of the 2019 West New York municipal election on May 14 by a clear margin, in what was a highly competitive and unpredictable campaign season.

Gabriel Rodriguez, joined by his four running mates, Rep. Albio Sires, and several members of the Hudson County Democratic Organization announced the unofficial results at the team’s campaign headquarters.

  • Gabriel Rodriguez: 3,602
  • Cosmo A. Cirillo: 3,616
  • Margarita A. Guzman: 3,502
  • Victor M. Barrera: 3,42
  • Yoleisy Yanez: 3,373
  • Felix E. Roque: 2,717
  • Susan Colacurcio: 2,606
  • Maite Fernandez: 2,510
  • Ana D. Luna: 2,496
  • Richard Acosta: 2,502
  • Adil S. Ahmed: 631
  • Anthony Valdes: 247
  • Manuel Andujar Jr.: 206
  • Claudia Calderon: 204
  • Armando Galis-Menendez: 167
  • Ronald Scheurle: 207
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“Folks, we have been doing this for over a year, working hard,” Rodriguez said. “I want to thank every one of you for your dedication.”

Rodriguez will be chosen by his running mates as mayor at the next Board of Commissioners’ meeting in town hall on May 21.

On election day the city streets were flooded with campaign workers pushing hard to get out the vote, despite cold, rainy weather.

Five candidates were on Column E, the “Forward with Roque,” slate. That slate included Mayor Felix Roque, Commissioner Susan Colacurcio, and three political newcomers, Richie Acosta, Ana Luna, and Maite Fernandez.

On Column A was the “New Beginnings West New York” slate headed by Commissioners Gabriel Rodriguez, Cosmo Cirillo and Margarita Guzman, who recruited political newcomers Yoleisy Yanez and Victor Barrera.

Caught in the crosshairs

Roque was unable to contend with the county’s Democratic establishment. Rep. Sires (a former West New York mayor), the Hudson County Democratic Organization, and the vast majority of local elected officials in the county all endorsed Rodriguez’s efforts to oust Roque from office.

Roque was routinely targeted by Communication Workers of America (CWA), a local union, which represents hundreds of municipal employees of West New York in all departments. CWA representatives made broad, public accusations that Roque engaged in corruption and political retaliation against numerous members of the union.

Boots on the ground

All the candidates had boots on the ground until the bitter end at 8 p.m. Both contenders, at that point, exuded confidence that they’d win by a clear margin.

Outside of the voting booths the afternoon of election day, Roque spoke with The Hudson Reporter, confidently predicting, incorrectly as it turned out, that his slate would pull off a clean sweep by a large margin.

The Board of Commissioners scheduled a reorganization meeting for May 21 at noon.

For updates on this and more stories check hudsonreporter.com or follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Mike Montemarano can be reached at mikem@hudsonreporter.com.

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