Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Wal-Mart affects NJ mayor race

The Wal-Mart Free NYC coalition alerts us to this piece of news from New Jersey:

Jun Choi, a political newcomer who tapped into Edison's burgeoning Asian population, wrestled the Democratic nomination from Mayor George Spadoro yesterday in a stunning upset.
Choi's candidacy was boosted by his union support and his opposition to a Wal-Mart proposed for Edison:

Choi ran a tough campaign against the three-term incumbent, saying he wanted to free Edison from the grip of machine politics. He criticized Spadoro for raising taxes, overdevelopment and allowing a Wal-Mart to be built on Route 27.

After his speech last night, Choi said he would do what he could to stop the planned mega store.

"We're going to do everything we can to stop that development," said Choi, who received endorsements from UFCW Local 1262, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Joint Council 73, and the Retail Workers and Department Store Union Local 108, partly because of his opposition to the retail store.

The proposed 142,048-square-foot store, along with an attached retail store, a restaurant and a bank, passed Nov. 15 in one planning board hearing.

Kinsora said that the unions decided to support Choi with no agreement that the Wal-Mart would be scuttled. But if that happened, Kinsora said, "It would be a happy coincidence."