Archive: November, 2009
Former Eagles offensive lineman Jon Runyan, who said this week he plans to run for Congress in South Jersey's Third District, didn't talk to the Jersey media on the day of his announcement, but spoke a bit to Associated Press reporters in California covering his new deal with the San Diego Chargers.
His impetus for running, according to AP: Congress needs change.
"Something has to be changed. I mean, you talk about career politicians and the way this country is going, you've got to try something different because it's not working," Runyan told the wire service Wednesday.
Public support for a same-sex marriage bill in New Jersey has slipped, to the point where more people oppose the idea than back it, according to a Quinnipiac University poll out today.
According to the poll, 49 percent of those surveyed oppose a law to allow same-sex couples to marry, compared to 46 support who support the idea. That's a change from the April survey that found 49 percent of voters supported same-sex marriage against 43 percent who opposed it. In three of the four Quinnipiac polls that raised the question (last week, April, December 2006 and November 2006), opponents have outweighed supporters.
The poll of 1,615 New Jersey voters had a 2.4 percent margin of error.
Three out of four New Jersey voters want to see a wage freeze for state workers and 61 percent back the idea of lay offs to balance the state budget, according to a Quinnipiac University poll out today.
When it comes to a wage freeze, even union households support the idea, 62 to 33 percent. Statewide, 75 percent of voters support a wage freeze compared to 21 percent who oppose it.
As to lay offs, 49 percent of union households support the idea against 48 percent who oppose it.
The New Jersey League of Municipalities' convention, one of the biggest events on the political class' schmoozing calendar, is in full swing here in Atlantic City.
Officially, it's all about seminars and discussion groups on hot topics such as "E-mail Retention and Document Management Policies, Problems and Solutions" and "Government At Work - Realizing Customer Satisfaction and Taxpayer Savings" - along with pontificating by top cabinet officials, legislative leaders and high profile mayors in a series of panels.
But the real buzz here comes from the mixture of lobbyists, municipal officials and the political elite, who duck out for meetings at restaurants or just at the metal tables in the lobby of the city's convention center. And for the night-time parties that draw from all aspects of Trenton's cast of characters. Information is traded fast.
Senate Majority Leader Stephen Sweeney, a Gloucester County Democrat who is poised to become Senate President, said today that Democrats should focus on the economy, not same-sex marriage.
"One of the things that’s wrong with the Democrat party is that the focus is on this issue when we have many others that should be really taking priority," Sweeney said at the New Jersey League of Municipalities convention in Atlantic City. He called same-sex marriage "an important social issue that will have its day," but said that after November's election his party should realize that the economy is the most important issue.
His comments may further chip away at the chances for same-sex marriage passing in New Jersey. Gay rights advocates had hoped to move marriage legislation through the "lame duck" session of the Legislature that kicks off Monday. For them, the timing has become more urgent because Gov.-elect Christopher J. Christie, who takes office in January, has said he would veto a same-sex marriage bill.
The post-mortems are in, and the consensus among reporters is that Gov. Corzine lost for three big reasons:
- he failed to ease the property tax burden and repair state finances, two of the key promises of his 2005 campaign
- he never mastered politics, standing aloof from the political players he needed to help move his agenda, backing off of too many fights and failing to connect with the public he was leading
Republican Gov.-elect Chris Christie spent the second day after his election much like the first: with a Democratic leader in a Democratic town talking about bipartisanship.
Christie went to Woodbridge Thursday, a blue collar Middlesex County town, one of the biggest municipalities in the state, that typically votes Democratic but backed the Republican Tuesday. Christie greeted residents on Main Street alongside Democratic Mayor John McCormac, a former state Treasurer. The previous day Christie was greeted at a Newark charter school along with Democratic power broker Steve Adubato, Newark Mayor Cory Booker and Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo.
The message today was just like Wednesday's: Christie said he would work with anyone who is effective, Democrat or Republican. "New Jersey's problems are too big for the petty kind of politics of the past," he said. It's a practical message -- Christie will still have to work with a Legislature controlled by Democrats.