Monday, April 25, 2011

Political Operative Steals 6th Ward Council Candidate Jen Giattino Signs

Political operative Matt Callichio is at it again with his thuggery and Hoboken elections. So much for a clean campaign by the "old guard". They will try to take this election by any means necessary. They already have co-opted most of the media including's Auggie "I love the Hudson Machine" Torres, The Hoboken Reporter (although Ray Smith is good), and to some extent the editorial decisions on Hoboken Patch. They have showed a willingness to buy elections, co-opted a formerly well respected organization like POG (POG still has many solid reformers but its leadership is in question), resort to smear tactics on unfounded and unsourced articles on Hoboken 411. They have used intimidation tactics and on election day buy the illusion of support with mountains of street money. What will they do next? Try to assault the Mayor? Rip down signs? Intimidate voters in the housing projects? Rip down signs?

Matt Callichio pictured center in his distinctive vest shown in the video below

Let us hope that it doesn't go further than ripping down signs but I somehow doubt it.

Now Matt Callichio is just a young guy doing what he is told. I like to call him the "Hoboken Ripper" for his uncanny ability to remove campaign signage during election cycles. Despite being a heavy guy he has even allegedly tore down signs hanging from the second floor in recent elections. This guy at close to 300 pounds might not be ripped, but is you are a reform candidate wanting to post your sign you will be ripped (campaign sign that is).

Here goes Jen Giattino's press release on the topic:


A local Hoboken 6th Ward store owner sent the Giattino campaign footage of political operative Matt Calicchio removing her campaign signs (video: The store owner forwarded a statement explaining, “a man walked into my store on April 19th and said he worked for Jen Giattino. He told me she knew there was a $100 fine for having her posters in a store's window.” She continued, “[he] removed the signs and took them with him.”

This is fishy because the Hoboken Zoning Office is the only department or entity that has jurisdiction over signs and signage. The office confirms that political material and campaign literature is exempt from signage restrictions and fully protected by the 1st Amendment, unless they are somehow creating a dangerous condition. However, political signs must be removed within a week of the conclusion of the election.

Matt Calicchio is a foot soldier for the Beth Mason – Michael Russo faction of the City Council reelection, which includes Giattino's opponent, Nino Giacchi. Just 5 months ago, Calicchio was named in sworn affidavits from 4th Ward residents that allege he offered them $40 to fill out a vote-by-mail ballot for Tim Occhipinti in the recent special election which shifted the majority in the City Council and resulted in Beth Mason becoming Council President, which was reported in (

New Jersey politics are notoriously dirty, but Jen Giattino was looking forward to running a clean and fair campaign on the issues. “I cannot even begin to convey the level of disappointment I am feeling right now. We have run a clean, honest campaign about issues affecting the 6th Ward. The fact that Nino Giacchi has not publicly denounced the behavior of his operatives removing our campaign signs shows that even if he hasn't directly contributed to the culture of political corruption in Hoboken, he is certainly enabling it to happen,” said Jen Giattino.

For more information about Jen Giattino, please visit ◦