TRENTON — Council President Kathy McBride has accused a local blogger of calling her a “c**t.”
She alleged that Bill Kearney, a town resident and co-founder of Trenton Orbit, made disparaging remarks during a meeting last week.
A hot mic captured Kearney’s partner in crime, overall candidate Michael Ranallo, calling McBride a “nasty bitch” and a “dumb hole” as they were on the phone together.
Most of Kearney’s hot mic comments are unintelligible, and The Trentonian was unable to independently corroborate McBride’s claim.
Kearney denied calling McBride the C-word and said he would consult with a lawyer about the alleged defamatory allegation.
“I was equally surprised to hear him exclaim from the stage,” he said. “I would definitely recognize it if I did. I don’t use that word. It defamed me because I have a position in the community, good, bad or indifferent. I don’t want anyone to think I used that word.
McBride declined to comment when reached by text message Tuesday.
City Clerk Matthew Conlon, one of McBride’s ardent supporters, played a recording of Ranallo’s slurs against the council speaker during last Tuesday’s meeting.
He said he planned to donate a day’s pay to an organization dedicated to protecting women from domestic violence and encouraged all male city managers and Mayor Reed Gusciora to do the same.
The clerk said he would also contact Facebook to try to get Trenton Orbit, a popular online forum that tracks city government, removed from the web.
“It has affected me so much. I’m so sorry it got aired,” said Conlon, who faces being removed from his post after a law firm confirmed testimony from three women who claimed to have been sexually harassed by the clerk.
A special meeting has been scheduled and announced for Wednesday to present the charges to the clerk.
City officials said the meeting was canceled because McBride would not proceed with the disciplinary hearing. No makeup date has been announced.
South Ward Councilor George Muschal said he and his wife listened to the tape of last Tuesday’s meeting “over and over” and never heard Kearney use the C-word.
” That is not here. And the clerk is trying to make something out of nothing,” he said.
Muschal accused the chairman of the board of fabricating the controversy to distract from some of the clerk’s antics, adding that Conlon needed a “mental assessment”.
Some council members are fed up with McBride’s leadership, Muschal said, believing she has exercised her power too much.
A few weeks ago, legislative leaders discussed a possible coup to unseat McBride, who remained president throughout her term, Muschal said.
The lame duck Muschal said he lacked a single vote to garner enough support to oust McBride, so the plan was not implemented.
“I won’t take much. Just to stop this bullshit,” he said of the presidency. “It’s terrible. She’s out of control.