Breaking: Dr. Félix Roque wins West New York Mayoral Contest!
Rafael Roman Martel
Dr. Felix Roque and his slate swept incumbent Mayor Silverio “Sal” Vega in West New York tonight. Roque’s victory is a clear sign that the Hudson County political machine is weakening as new candidates step to the plate to challenge the lifetime corrupted career politicians.
Two years ago Dr. Roque made the decision to confront the tax hikes and corrupt administration of West New York. He lost a recall last year but he focused on his goal: to become mayor and improve the conditions of the embattled township. Not many gave him a chance. Others mocked him openly or in a sarcastic way. Neither is laughing tonight.
Tonight’s results in West New York also clearly show what remained of the influence the once acclaimed US Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) had in what it once was his stronghold.
Menendez backed Vega’s team exalting the former mayor as a low-tax politician and a local leader putting his weight and his bets on Vega.
The attacks against Dr. Roque and his allies were low and vile, even for Hudson County standards. The TV ads were tasteless and dirty.
Voters were turned off.
They were primarily turned off by an incredible 51% tax hike, by scandals and the violence that Vega’s supporters exercised during the recall effort, and the last weeks of this campaign.
Tonight Roque opened the way for honest men and women who want change in their cities. Roque’s victory underlines that we live in the greatest democracy on earth, where voters have the last word over political bosses and their machines, over powerful senators and big money.
Congratulations Dr. Roque and the people of West New York on a great victory!
Here are the numbers from The Hudson County Board of Elections:
West New York Commissioner
Vote Count Percent
UNA – Ercides L. Aguasvivas 238 0.76%
UNA – Felix E. Roque 3,763 11.96%
UNA – Count J. Wiley 3,236 10.28%
UNA – Caridad Rodriguez 3,349 10.64%
UNA – FiorD’ Aliza Frias 3,219 10.23%
UNA – Ruben Vargas 3,215 10.22%
UNA – Silverio A. Vega 3,137 9.97%
UNA – Gerald A. Lange Jr. 2,802 8.90%
UNA – Michelle Fernandez-Lopez 2,809 8.93%
UNA – Lawrence Riccardi 2,864 9.10%
UNA – Alberto Rodriguez 2,830 8.99%
Personal Choice 11 0.03%
Total 31,473 100.00%