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Posted by Manolo on October 06, 2005 at 09:01:48:

Posted by Rev. Edward Allen on October 06, 2004 at 11:28:07:

An Open Letter to the People of Jersey City
Lou Manzo's Betrayal of Glenn Cunningham:
Dear Friends of Jersey City:

I have been very fortunate in my years as an active Jersey City resident and involved community member to meet a multitude of people who share a commitment to making our city, the greatest in New Jersey. I believe that Jersey City was making great strides. The leadership of our departed Mayor and State Senator Glenn D. Cunningham was a beacon for the people of Jersey City. Mayor Cunningham was a voice that spoke the words of the people. His was a mind that understood the people's priorities, and his heart beat with caring and empathy for all those living in his beloved hometown. While we may never see a spirit so forthright in our midst again, surely we have been blessed by the short time he has touched us.

But now that spirit is being tainted by the very forces Glenn Cunningham fought to stop. The yolk of political treachery and self-interests has resurfaced in Jersey City politics with Lou Manzo. He has adopted all of the trappings of what Cunningham represented, even stealing the slogan Jersey City First from the Cunningham political action committee. Like any thief, Manzo has not earned what he claims, and those working behind the scenes know this. Jersey City voters deserve to know the truth too. The lies and misrepresentations of Lou Manzo must be stopped. For these reasons I offer this open letter to Jersey City with the truth about Lou Manzo's political dealings and his betrayal of Glenn Cunningham.

As any political pundit will attest, in January 2004, Lou Manzo won the Assemblyman seat in Jersey City because of Glenn D. Cunningham and the Reform Democratic ticket. The entire Hudson County Democratic Organization including eleven (11) other mayors and Governor McGreevy worked against the Cunningham ticket - Cunningham, Manzo, and Chiappone. The Hudson County Democrats outspent the Reform Democratic Organization five to one. All the political prognosticators predicted the upstart team could not win, but the people spoke louder with their votes than the pundits with their polls. The support and strength of Glenn Cunningham could not be denied. The desires of the people won out over the desires of politicians and Cunningham pulled Manzo and Chiappone to victory. One would believe that a person who won with the Cunningham team would have respect and loyalty for the man who made it possible. One would believe that a man who brought an entourage of nieces and nephews to his acceptance speech and quoted John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. throughout would be an honorable and decent man. But that was just the public face that hid the unscrupulous actions of this political charlatan and backstabber.

In February of 2004, while the Mayor was still alive, the Cunningham team learned that the newly elected Manzo had a secret meeting with Congressman Bob Menendez, the defacto head of the Hudson County Democratic Organization. Menendez and Manzo talked about Manzo getting Menendez's support for the Jersey City mayoral election in 2005, against Glenn D. Cunningham.

While the Congressman and I have not always agreed, I do recognize that Mr. Menendez is a smart man and savvy politician, and his actions demonstrated that intelligence. As the story goes, the Congressman told him NO, stating that if Glenn Cunningham was his friend and he (Manzo) would stab him in the back, if he (Menendez) helped him and he won, Manzo would likely stab him in the heart. Not only While the Congressman and I have not always agreed, I do recognize that Mr. Menendez did his bid for greater support fail, but his underhanded tactics were revealed. Manzo continued to work diligently against our beloved leader, as would any Judas in the face of his savior.

When Glenn unexpectedly left this earthly plane on May 25th, Lou Manzo and his cohort, former Jersey City mayor Gerry McCann, started soliciting support among the Hudson County Democrats earnestly. Now with their competition gone, there was nothing to stop them from stealing the honors Cunningham had so rightfully earned. Even people among the Hudson County Democratic Organization were shocked that the Assemblyman would stoop so low. The Reformed Democrats were shocked that these men did not have the decency to at least wait until the mayor was buried.

Gerry McCann told the Cunningham team he would do nothing for thirty days while the city mourned Cunningham's death. The Cunningham team learned that on May 30th, McCann and Manzo had reserved the Casino in the Park for a victory party to be held on November 2nd, celebrating Manzo's anticipated mayoral victory. Gerry McCann proved himself as truthful now as he was while in office. His promise to wait the thirty days was a lie. The mayor was buried on June 1st, and they had already slithered away to make celebration plans before the man was even in the ground. When Cunningham died, they picked at his legacy like vultures, grabbing scraps until they could satisfy their hunger for power. Some of those contacted called Cunningham family and friends, telling what had happened. The family was so appalled they banned Manzo from speaking at the funeral. He had already shown that he was a hypocrite. If allowed to speak he would have only proven that he was the Judas of Jersey City. He would have made the largest scene, lamenting the loss the loudest while gleefully thinking that nothing could prevent him from becoming mayor. Cunningham knew how much he could trust Lou Manzo. He knew how much Manzo would do to keep close to the seat of power. Like Jesus, Cunningham knew that one of his "disciples" would betray him. While Manzo would proclaim, "Surely Lord, not I", Cunningham and the Reform Democratic Organization knew he would soon turn his back to plot, away from prying eyes.

To this day from that fateful May 25th, Lou Manzo has yet to offer condolences to the wife or family members of Glenn D. Cunningham. Sentimental words would ring hollow when his actions have spoken so much louder. At a second meeting in June with Congressman Menendez, after Glenn Cunningham's death, Manzo took another shot at gaining his endorsement. The more than wary Congressman was emphatic in his rejection this time, and told Manzo again, that he would not support him.

It is amazing that Gerry McCann and Lou Manzo can live with themselves and their actions, but they are the prime example of what disheartens the Jersey City voter about politics.

Mayor Glenn D. Cunningham worked to bring trustworthy representatives into politics. How can Lou Manzo be a decent mayor when he so callously double-crossed Mayor Cunningham, the man who made his political dreams come true? Cunningham and his support from the minority community made Lou Manzo an Assemblyman in the 31s' district. As Congressman Menendez aptly noted, he will stab a friend in the back and stab an ally in the heart. This is not a man whom we can trust to work in our best interests.

Cohort Gerry McCann is the other head of the serpent in our garden city. Gerry McCann was a pariah in the Hudson County Democratic Organization and Jersey City as a result of the legal troubles that tainted his administration. It is amazing that Gerry McCann would be party to such behavior given the fact that by the grace of the late Mayor Cunningham, McCann was able to survive. Cunningham was the only one who would give McCann a job when he was nearly destitute. And we all know his reputation in the African American community. If Gerry McCann had his way, there would be no African American community. This is the man that Lou Manzo has chosen to run his campaign of lies and misdirection. This is the man who brags to supporters that he is running the campaign and will be Chief of Staff if Manzo wins the election. Jersey City can handle a lot of things, but another administration under the influence of Gerry McCann, is not one of them.

I implore his constituents to challenge Mr. Manzo with the truth. Voters have the right to know that they will not be sponsoring back-door deals, that they will not be party to the illegalities of proposed officials, and that they will not be embarrassed by their representative's improprieties. The death of the honorable Glenn D. Cunningham has left the city in a fragile state. We have weathered the storm of a beloved official's passing, and continue to feel its ravages as his enemies claim authority and repackage their actions for greater political acceptance. First he fought against Joe Doria while running with Glenn Cunningham. Now, Lou Manzo endorses Joe Doria and sanctions the removal of a minority Senator from the 31st district seat. There is no end to Lou Manzo's treachery and betrayal. Let's not allow Jersey City to be next.

Wishing blessings of hope and wisdom to all the citizens of Jersey City, these and others things are

Humbly submitted,

Rev. Edward Allen

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