If the likes of Gov. Chris Christie have their way, then the days are numbered for embattled Trenton Mayor Tony Mack. Christie said on Monday that Mack should immediately resign in the wake of a federal indictment handed down last week.
“It [the indictment] places such a cloud over your ability to act objectively, freely and aggressively in elected office that it’s in the best interest of the people that you serve to step down,” Christie said. He added, “I believe the mayor should step down.” Christie is a former prosecutor and was instrumental in the fall and subsequent conviction by the feds of former Newark Mayor Sharpe James.
Similarly, Mack was arrested in a federal sting earlier this year and was formally indicted last week by the feds for corruption and accepting bribes from developers for preferential treatment on a city contract. Mack has maintained his innocence and has said he will not resign. State and federal laws do not require the disgraced mayor to step down, unless he is convicted. However, some Trentonians contend Mack may not have a choice.
“He doesn’t have the respect of the people,” said Phyllis Holly-Ward, vice president of the Trenton City Council. “They [the people] have no confidence in his ability to effectively run the city.” Earlier this year, it was Holly-Ward who was so frustrated with how poorly Mack was running the city that she threatened to “shut down Trenton!”
A blogger posted, “I think he should step off and leave with some type of dignity.”
Trenton activist Divine Allah noted, “Anthony Mack says he is innocent, and people should wait to hear the real details before jumping to conclusions. A lot of people really like Anthony Mack and they want to know the truth.”
Hearings in Mack’s federal trial are expected to begin in January.