(ORANGE, NJ) - On Tuesday, March 17, because of coronavirus, what was originally scheduled to be a rally with hundreds of RSVPs from Orange residents looking for a change, was instead scaled back into an announcement with only a few people and a Facebook live audience.
With reporters and a social media audience looking on, At-Large Orange Councilwoman Donna K. Williams officially announced her run for Mayor. Williams was joined by her Team Orange 2020 slate for At-Large City Council, Antoinett A. Hall and Weldon Montague III. The announcement was followed by an endorsement from People's Organization for Progress' Larry Hamm who is also a candidate for US Senate. Information was also shared about a new voting restoration law that passed at the State allowing those on probation or parole to vote.
If Williams wins, she would become the first female Mayor in the history of Orange. Williams, the top vote getter in two past Orange elections is widely said to be a front contender in the crowded race against incumbent Dwayne Warren. “The race is going to be between Williams and Warren” said a Williams supporter. “People want to see change, Mayor Warren had his chance, the people of Orange want more. Donna has an impeccable leadership record and is always helping people. She is educated and down to earth, why not her?”
With an announcement coming from the Governor that the Orange election will take place using vote by mail ballots only, the usual formula to victory has changed. Insiders believe this announcement could work in favor of Warren. "Politics is going to be different for now. We are used to campaigners talking directly to people, shaking hands, embracing supporters. Because of this virus, times have changed fast,” said a political insider. “The challenge for Orange's Mayoral election is two-fold, one, who can reach the voters while implementing social distancing, and two, who can get the voters to remember to vote during this time of high anxiety?"
A sample of the Orange ballot is below:
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