Labor Eyes Mayoral Candidates

PERTH AMBOY – The Middlesex and Somerset Counties AFL-CIO Labor Council will be holding closed-door interviews on Thursday, Oct. 11, at 6 p.m. with candidates for the mayor of Perth Amboy for a possible endorsement in the upcoming election.

Each candidate will have ten minutes to share their position and ten minutes to answer questions from the delegates of the council. The regular monthly meeting of the Central Labor Council will follow the interviews.

Questions about the labor union endorsements should be directed via e-mail to council president Thomas Tighe at or by phone at 732-735-3311.

Working families have a lot at stake in the election.
There were 2,010 jobless people in Perth Amboy when incumbent Wilda Diaz was elected in May 2008 and the latest unemployment statics show 4,079 residents were unemployed during August.

She is being opposed by five candidates, including Billy E. Delgado, who is the leading challenger according to polls conducted by Bendixen & Amandi International, Anzelone & List Research, Global Strategies Group and Devine Advertising Associates.

In addition to privatizing the city’s ambulance squad and laying off dozens of city employees, Diaz supported Republican Gov. Chris Christie’s attack on collective bargaining andproposed end to the state’s affordable housing program.

The Perth Amboy mayoral contest was voted as the most compelling election in the state by readers in an online survey conducted by — a political news website.

Mascenik endorsed by AFL-CIO
One of Delgado’s city council runningmates, Ana Mascenik, has already been endorsed by the labor panel. Also on Delgado’s slate is Jose Santos, a local vice principal.

Fernando Irizarry and Lisa Nanton are seeking election to the governing body with Diaz and no city council candidates would associate themselves with any of the other for mayoral contestants on the ballot.

A previous report incorrectly stated that  Mascenik and Santos had been endorsed by the American Federation of Laborers-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) political action committee for Middlesex County.

The organization is the Middlesex and Somerset Counties Central Labor Council, is affiliated with the state and national AFL-CIO supporting and representing labor and trade unions in their pursuits for social and economic justice in the workplace.  The body has taken no action on  endorsements of City Council candidates other than Ana Mascenik, who recently returned from the Democratic National Convention in South Carolina where she was an Obama delegate.


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