Hoboken Sikh Wins Election

June 11, 2009

Author: Anju Kaur

Source: SikhNN


In the run-off election Tuesday for Hoboken, N. J., mayor and council, Ravinder Singh Bhalla won the most votes for councilman-at-large, which will give him the national distinction of holding one of the highest elected offices as a Sikh.

“This election demonstrate that a Sikhs can be successful in the public sphere if (he/she) runs an issue-based campaign,” Ravinder Singh said. “The community is better off as whole if we engage with the (public).”

Ravinder Singh was on a slate with gubernatorial candidate Dawn Zimmer who won by a slim margin, 51 to 49 percent, leading her opponent by 265 votes. But after a large number of absentee ballots were counted early Wednesday, the results flipped. Cammarano is now leading with 67 votes, said Jerry Lore, spokesman for the county clerk’s office. About 100 provisional ballots remain to be counted on Friday. Provisional ballots are essentially those ballots for which a voter’s eligibility was questioned on Election Day. The results may flip again.

“These are very exciting times,” Lore said.

But none of this affects Ravinder Singh. With the highest number of votes, 5,810, he leads his slate candidates, Carol Marsh and David Mello, by a narrow margin. The nearest council candidate from the Cammarano slate is about 300 votes away, Lore said.

“(Ravinder Singh) is right now the strongest of all council members,” he said. “I am 99 percent sure that he will be on the council.” The Hoboken city clerk is expected to certify and announce the new council members once the provisional ballots are counted on Friday.

See also: Sikhism, Civic