PLAINFIELD, NJ - The “Faraones” night club was transformed into a political rally event on May 24th for the campaign of Mayor Sharon Robinson Briggs. With the primary in full swing and the election just around the corner the Mayor brought out all the stops to rally her base in Plainfield. There were over one hundred people in attendance including community leaders, advocates, and close friends of the Mayor. The keynote speaker was Reverend Al Sharpton, a civil rights leader and national political figure.
Reverend Sharpton began by addressing a controversy surrounding $20,000 that was spent on a radio show broadcast to address gang violence in Plainfield in 2010. There have been accusations that the money was used superfluously and that Reverend Sharpton received the money in return for previously endorsing the mayor. However, Sharpton said on Friday night that he did not receive a check for supporting Briggs in 2010 and did not receive one for coming out to Friday night's event, either.
Sharpton condemned opponents of Briggs for attacking her, comparing them to “gangsters” and “Crips and Bloods.”
Sharpton spoke about the need for unification of all political sects in Plainfield. He discussed his future hopes for Plainfield, including an end to gang violence, corruption, and violence in the city, and a resurgence of grace, unity, and pride that is the basis for Plainfield's moniker, the Queen City.
The Mayor spoke with The Alternative Press of Plainfield, stating that her vision for Plainfield's future is encompassed by her Five Star Plan, which includes the creation of a Plainfield youth center/skate park, more youth and adult employment, a safer community environment, neighborhood beautification, and increasing revenues through additional shared services. On the subject of crime, Briggs said that there has been a decrease in serious crime and there is a lower homicide rate now than when she took office.
The primary election will be held on Tuesday June 4th, 6am-8pm, at polling locations throughout the Queen City.