Former Giants great and NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson said this morning he is still considering a bid for Congress in the 5th District but has not yet made a decision.
Carson, who lives in Franklin Lakes, said he will have a diecision in the near future. The former Giants linebacker would bring immense name recognition to the race owing to his 13 years as a star for the Giants. Carson has personal wealth, which Democrats hope could offset the $1.5 million Garrett has on hand.
Carson said in the past he would not have considered a run for office, but has changed his thinking.
"I haven't made any decision on it yet," Carson said when reached Friday. "I hope to have a decision in the near future, but I'm not ready to say anything yet."
With the expected departure of U.S. Rep. Steve Rothman from the newly configured 5th District, Democrats are scrambling to find a viable candidate to run against incumbent Republican Scott Garrett. Carson's name has been floated often, and with Assemblywoman Connie Wagner's announcement that she will not seek the seat, politicos on the Chamber of Commerce train trip to Washington D.C. were speculating over Carson's future.
To date, two candidates have emerged in the 5th. Passaic County Freeholder Terry Duffy is in the exploratory phase, but sources said he jumped the gun with his campaign and will not be a final contender. Teaneck Deputy Mayor Adam Gussen has formally announced his candidacy, and is expected to follow through to the convention. Several Bergen sources told PolitickerNJ that Carson is expected to top the poll in the field, and could be offered the candidacy if he wants it.
Reached Friday, Bergen County Democratic Chairman Lou Stellatto said he hopes to have the candidate in place by mid-February.
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"This is my first Mark Smith event. There have been a lot of changes in Hudson County over the last year and a half, and the most important change that has happened is that there really is unity. For the first time, we really are working together. Despite political differences. Mark and I have worked very hard to repair that. I'm really happy to be here in support of him, because I recognize that when you work together, politics becomes secondary and you really have time to focus on government, which is the most important thing." - Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop- PolitickerNJ.com
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