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Princeton Consolidation Update: Borough Mayoral Candidates Both Say Still Undecided

If Democratic borough mayoral candidate Yina Moore or Republican candidate Jill Jachera have made up their minds about consolidation, neither is showing her cards just yet.

Both candidates claim they have not taken a position on consolidation, and that they still don’t know how they will vote on this issue in the Nov. 8 election.

Interviewed by Planet Princeton after the consolidation forum that was sponsored by the Princeton Community Democratic Organization tonight, both said they are still gathering information before they reach an opinion.

While that is fine with some voters, others are pushing for the mayoral candidates to show leadership and take a position on the issue.

At the forum, attended by more than 125 people, one of the questions posed to panelists was whether the mayoral candidates should “put aside personal ambition to address the merits of consolidation directly”given how important the issue is.

“I think that leaders need to show leadership,” panelist Patrick Simon said. “Part of showing leadership is making up your mind and taking a stand. The mayoral candidates should do that.”

Simon, a consolidation study commission member, was one of two panelists speaking in support of consolidation at the forum.

Pro-consolidation panelist Claire Jacobus said the whether a candidate is willing to take a stand or not would “serve to add to the potential mayoral profile.”

Several members of the audience clapped when comments were made urging the candidates to express their views on the issue.

Moore and Jachera will debate each other this Tuesday, Sept. 20, at 7:30 p.m. at the Jewish Center, which is located at 435 Nassau Street. The debate will be moderated by the League of Women Voters. Consolidation is sure to be one of the main topics the candidates will be asked about.

Krystal Knapp

Krystal Knapp is the founding editor of Planet Princeton. She can be reached via email at editor AT planetprinceton.com. Send all letters to the editor and press releases to that email address.

  • Roger Martindell

    Consolidation: it’s understandable that the two candidates for Princeton Borough mayor wouldn’t want to alienate any voting block, including those for or against consolidation. Foremost in their minds may be their desire to be elected mayor. So the candidates are prone to say nothing clear on the subject, simply to avoid rejection by those who may disagree.

    But the issue is now so much in the forefront of the civil dialog in the Princetons that consolidation — whether or not it should occur and how to manage the outcome of the referendum, either way — should be also be in the forefront of the candidates’ thinking. Personal ambition is acceptable; blind ambition is not. Where is the vision and leadership skill, candidates, to articulate the pros and cons of consolidation, and how to manage its adoption or rejection in the upcoming referendum?

    The candidates do not directly address consolidation if all they do is merely ask more questions about the Consolidation Study Commission’s report or doubt the ability of local officials to make good on the Commission’s recommendations: that is no more than a strategy to deflect voters who crave to know those how the candidates would lead the community in one direction or the other. Candidates, your would-be voters deserve to hear your views … or learn that you don’t have any or are unable to implement those you do.

    So, are you for or against consolidation, candidates; and why? How would you manage the outcome of the referendum, either way?

    No need to hide behind the questions and doubts — everyone has those. But why should we elect you if you are not able or willing to lead us into the future?

    Roger Martindell

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