Newark City Councilman Augusto Amador has expanded his lead over challenger Anthony Campos and is now ahead by 108 votes. With 48 provisional votes not yet counted, Amador has a lock on his re-election to a sixth term representing the East Ward.
Campos, a former Newark police chief, has not yet conceded. But the Newark City Clerk’s office says that the race is over and that even if Campos swept the provisional votes, it would not be enough to oust the incumbent.
Amador had led Campos by a 43%-35% margin in the May 8 election but fell 250 votes short of avoiding a runoff.
Allies from the North Ward, who sent an army of supporters in, appear to have saved Amador. The alliance between the two wards goes back to the days of Steve Adubato and Joe Parlevecchio, and North Ward councilman Anibal Ramos has developed a strong relationship with Amador.
Campos is crying foul, suggesting that the North Ward took over. But the North Ward Democratic Municipal Chairman, Sammy Gonzalez, has pushed back on Campos’ complaints.
“The voters of the East Ward have spoken. They want to continue the progress the East Ward and Newark have made under the leadership of Councilman Amador,” Gonzalez said. “The opposition’s team hired outside campaign consultants who knew nothing about Newark, the East Ward or its voters and spent four times as much money as Team Amador. They used that money to wage a negative campaign of lies about Councilman Amador’s record. But at the end of the day, voters weren’t fooled. Voters refused to buy the lies the Campos team was selling about a respected leader who has devoted the last 20 years to serving his constituents.”
Gonzalez called Campos’ refusal to concede “just sour grapes on behalf of a candidate who didn’t understand that votes in the East Ward can’t be bought, they must be earned with hard work and dedication to the community.”
“Councilman Amador has been a trusted friend and a valued colleague for years and we will always stand by our friends who continue to make public service their priority,” Gonzalez said.