Wednesday, October 14, 2015

HCDC Endorses DePietro

In a front page article, complete with a photograph taken by the reporter, the Register-Star trumpets the news that the Hudson City Democratic Committee has endorsed Tom DePietro for Common Council President: "Dems back DePietro for council prez."

DePietro sought the endorsement of the HCDC back in June but didn't get it, principally because HCDC chair Victor Mendolia was himself intending to run for Council president. In August, however, citing health issues, Mendolia withdrew from the race and threw his support to DePietro. Four weeks later, the HCDC has decided officially to endorse DePietro. The sad thing is that the HCDC endorsement may not be enough to overcome the obstacles of the actual physical ballot.

Not getting the HCDC endorsement in June, DePietro decided to run on his own party line: the All-Hudson Party. On the ballot for November 3, the All-Hudson Party, with DePietro as its only candidate, appears on Row I of the ballot after the Democratic (Row A), Republican (Row B), Conservative (Row C), Working Families (Row E), Independence (Row F), Women's Equality (Row G), and Reform (Row H) parties. Being far down on the ballot is a significant impediment to getting votes, but there's another. Because Mendolia did not withdraw from the race early enough to get his name removed from the ballot, it still appears twice--on Row A (Democratic) and on Row E (Working Families)--before you get to DePietro's name.

Running a independent party campaign is an uphill battle under any circumstances, but it is rendered even more difficult by having to remind people who might be inclined to vote for the Democratic candidate not to vote for him because he is not actually running. Perhaps the greatest benefit of the HCDC endorsement is that it warranted a front page story in the newspaper and another chance to explain the confusing situation to the voters of Hudson.

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