Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Christie brings a knife to the budget fight

Gov. Christie is getting ready to crack some skulls this summer.

Christie brings a knife to the budget fight

Gov. Christie arriving at a fund-raiser Tuesday for Mitt Romney in Woodbridge, N.J. (MEL EVANS/Associated Press)
Gov. Christie arriving at a fund-raiser Tuesday for Mitt Romney in Woodbridge, N.J. (MEL EVANS/Associated Press) MEL EVANS / Associated Press

Updated, 4 pm.

Gov. Christie is getting ready to crack some skulls this summer. 

Or so he said yesterday at a town hall meeting in Brick (full coverage: here), vowing to "fight" Democrats and "kick their rear ends" after they "lied" about putting a tax cut into their budget.

He called the Democratic Assembly budget chairman, Paul Sarlo, an "SOB," and said he was going to travel to every corner of the state to let every "living, breathing New Jerseyan" know that Democrats are liars.

We don't know what the gun-slinging gov has planned for what he is mockingly calling the "Corzine Democrats Summer Tour." Will his town hall meetings this summer be set in cage matches? Will boxing gloves be involved? And can I lay down some action on the fight -- or only if we're in Atlantic City?

So far, the only taste of what's in store has come in a series of robocalls, sponsored by the state GOP, that in the last few days began targeting Democratic legislators' districts. Check out this one, here, to Assemblyman Troy Singleton (D., Burlington), a new member of the assembly budget committee.

In the ad, a woman refers to Singleton's vote for a millionaire's tax (which Christie will undoubtedly veto). The woman doesn't mention that the tax would have been used for a middle-class property tax cut.

"My dad was shocked and appalled," Singleton said. Apparently his father got the call, and he doesn't want his taxes raised. "I said, 'You know me better than that.'"

"Its just a little bit disingenous," Singleton said. He noted that he pushed both the return of the energy receipts tax to towns for property tax relief, and an increase in the earned income tax credit for the working poor. "I'm sure that was an oversight on their part that they didn't mention those two pertinent tax cuts."

Still, Democrats this year did not agree to Christie's plan for a 10-percent income tax cut. "Their constituents deserve to know exactly who is standing between them and the tax cuts they have been waiting on for years," said Douglass V. Mayer, communications director for the NJ GOP, on the reason for the calls against legislators.

Here's my story from Tuesday, with background over this tax-and-budget dispute between Christie and the Dems. And let me know who you think is gonna win.

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