The NJDSC Week In Review for September 16, 2011
Welcome to the latest installment of the NJDSC's week in review. Here's a look back at some of the news from this past week and toward the end, some of the upcoming events around the state next week:
The 10th Anniversary of September 11
- Star Ledger: 9/11 tragedy remembered all across N.J. with tears, talks and patriotism.
- Chairman Wisniewski: “Let us remember those whose lives were so brutally cut short; salute the men and women in uniform who gave their lives to protect us; comfort those families and friends who most painfully felt these losses; and let us rekindle the unity, sense of purpose and determination we all felt as Americans in its aftermath.”
- Senator Lautenberg expressed his appreciation for participants across the country that spent one minute observing the nationwide Moment of Remembrance on September 11, 2011.
- Senator Menendez put out this video in rememberance of the 10th Anniversary of September 11.
- Congressman Holt: We remember all those Americans who lost their lives ten years ago, we mourn for all the friends and family members whose loved ones were taken from them, and we honor all of the heroes who put their lives at risk.
- Congressman Rothman helped plant a Swamp White Oak Tree in front of the U.S. Capitol to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the horrific attacks of September 11, 2001.
- Assemblyman Burzichelli: “(The attacks) reunited the heart of this country and taught us all again that we need each other, no matter how rich, no matter our circumstances, we need each other. That’s an important lesson and from that comes an important strength..."
New Jersey deserves to know what Governor Christie is hiding
- Mother Jones: Fallout From Chris Christie-Koch Brothers Exposé.
- Chairman Wisniewski said it's time for Christie to stop hiding his actions from the public: “Chris Christie claims he can hide his travels and who’s funding them from the people of New Jersey,” said Wisniewski. “We shouldn’t have to wonder if his policies are in the best interest of New Jersey, or whether out-of-state corporations and political ideologues are driving his agenda. It’s well past time for the Governor to stop hiding his activities and deliver on the transparency he promised. New Jersey voters deserve to know what else is he hiding and why he is hiding it?”
- New Jersey Newsroom: Should Gov. Christie tell N.J. when he leaves the state?
- Philadelphia Inquirer: Do you want to know where your governor is?
- BradBlog: Chris Christie Misleads on NJ Radio Show When Asked About Secret Meeting With Koch Brothers.
- Stile: Christie knows it's not his Family Guy role that has him again defending his travel plans. It's his below-the-radar visits to political sugar daddies, the donors and kingmakers that can steer millions of dollars into the state GOP coffers and choreograph his ascendancy to the national stage, like his two, pay-homage trips to David and Charles Koch, the billionaire industrialists, climate change deniers and nurturers of Tea Party extremism.
- Press of Atlantic City: N.J. governor claims he did not discuss pulling out of greenhouse gas pact during private trip.
- BradBlog: Christie Denies Discussing Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative with Kochs in ANY Secret Meeting.
- Philadelphia Inquirer Editorial: Christie should disclose secret political trips
- Blue Jersey: Reminder for Gov. Christie: You work for us.
- Star Ledger: Democratic state Sen. Loretta Weinberg tells The Associated Press she'll introduce a bill on Monday that would require the governor to be open about where he is at all times. Democrats have been critical of the governor for jetting off to private fundraising events out of state without releasing details of his whereabouts.
- New Jersey Sierra Club director, Jeff Tittel told the BradBlog on KPFK Radio about NJ Gov. Chris Christie's relationship with the Koch brothers : "If Christie was Pinocchio, u'd be getting hit with his nose about now". (Audio)
- Sayanythingblog.com: If Governor Christie doesn't like the spotlight that comes with high-profile public office, then perhaps he ought not have campaigned to get elected to it.
- Star Ledger Editorial: Christie campaigned on transparency and criticized former Gov. Jon Corzine for his out-of-state trips. But Christie now says taxpayers and the media have no right to know where he is at all times and he is entitled to a “zone of privacy.” He said he doesn’t want reporters following his family around while they’re on vacation. We're not interested in his candlelight dinners with his wife. But New Jersey taxpayers should know if he's cozying up to someone else with an agenda or big checkbook.
- In response to reports that Governor Christie left the State for an out-of-State political fundraiser without ever alerting anyone that he'd transferred power to Lieutenant Governor Guadagno, Senator Weinberg said that she will introduce legislation on Monday requiring notification of legislative leaders whenever the Governor leaves the State moving forward.
Congress Needs To Pass The American Jobs Act
- Chairman Wisniewski called on Congress to pass the American Jobs act: "The American Jobs Act will create jobs and strengthen our economy by getting Americans back to work to put more money back into the pockets of middle class families and small businesses," said Wisniewski. "Estimates show that the American Jobs Act could create 216,000 jobs in New Jersey, meaning families could feel more secure, be better positioned to make ends meet, save for their children's education, and support their local businesses. Congress needs to take action and pass the American Jobs Act now."
- Gannett: Obama embraces training plan Christie opposed.
- Speaker Oliver on Back to Work NJ concept supported by President Obama but opposed by governor: “It was just the kind of program we needed to tackle this recession and help workers and businesses alike to jump-start our economy and move our state forward..."
- Congressman Andrews talked about the need to pass the American Jobs Act. (Video)
- Record Editorial: Jobs, Jobs, Job - As much as Republicans understandably want to defeat Obama in the 2012 election, real people are in financial straits. They cannot afford more politics as usual.
- Senator Sarlo: “By making an investment in public transportation infrastructure, the President hopes to spur the construction industries while making some needed upgrades to our decaying roads, rails and bridges. In North Jersey specifically, we know that upgrades are long overdue, and will create a safer and less congested travelling experience to allow people to get where they need to go.
Christie backtracks on Draconian Medicaid Cuts
- Star Ledger: Thousands of New Jersey's working poor will keep their health insurance under a new administration proposal to restructure Medicaid, abandoning a controversial plan that would have drastically reduced the number of eligible recipients. In May, the state Department of Human Services proposed tightening the income requirements for New Jersey FamilyCare, an offshoot of Medicaid, which provides affordable health insurance for working parents and their children. For instance, a family of three making $5,317 a year would have earned too much to qualify, compared with the current income cutoff of $24,645. The initial proposal was roundly criticized by Democratic state legislators, New Jersey's congressional delegation and advocates for children and the poor.
- Assemblywoman Vainieri Huttle on Christie revising Medicaid plan: “The administration’s proposal in its original form would have dealt a devastating blow to some of our neediest residents. It’s comforting to know they have seen a bit of the light..."
New Jersey Democratic State Committee Releases National Convention Delegate Selection Press Kit
- In accordance with the Affirmative Action, Outreach and Inclusion Plan found in the New Jersey Delegate Selection Plan for the 2012 Democratic National Convention, the New Jersey Democratic State Committee today released its Delegate Selection Press Kit. The Press Kit is designed to provide an overview of the operation and importance of New Jersey's 2012 Delegate Selection Process.
- Letter from Chairman Wisniewski.
- Map of 2012 Delegate Districts.
- Guide to Becoming a Delegate.
- Representation Goals for 2012 Delegation.
- DNC Delegate Selection Rules for the 2012 Democratic National Convention.
Calis For Diversity On The Supreme Court
- Capitol Quickies - Groups press for black, Hispanic nominees to Supreme Court: “Gov. Christie’s promise to the citizens of New Jersey was to move this state forward. His policies not only belie his promises, but they also threaten to move our state’s judicial system backwards,” they wrote.
- Chairman Wisniewski supported the call for an independent and diverse Supreme Court: “It is a sad state of affairs that, in the 21 century, New Jersey’s seven member Supreme Court today begins a term without one Justice of color. While we can point with pride to the number of women on the highest court in the state, Governor Christie’s intense focus on the ideology of justices has left us with a court that does not reflect the diversity of our people. He has done our people and our state a disservice. In a letter to Senate leadership, a coalition of New Jersey legal organizations highlights Governor Christie’s apparent lack of concern over the history of diversity and bipartisanship on the court. I share those concerns and strongly encourage the Senate to remedy the situation in replacing upcoming vacancies.”
On the Trail
- PolitickerNJ: Whelan and Weinberg tag-team on women's healthcare issue in battleground LD2.
- The 4th District Democratic team of Senator Madden, Assemblyman Moriarty and Assembly candidate Mosquera called for swift enactment of legislation Moriarty is sponsoring to bring to New Jersey a unique job training program included by the president in his national jobs package and even praised by national Republican leaders.
- Star Ledger: Carl Lewis will get to run for the state Senate after all. In an 11th-hour reprieve for Lewis and a blow to Gov. Chris Christie's administration, a federal appeals court panel today gave the former Olympic gold medalist the green light for his campaign just days before the deadline to print ballots.
- Carl went on Hardball to discuss his race with Chris Mathews. (Video)
- Blue Jersey: Carl Lewis' NJ Senate campaign kickoff (redux)
- Marlboro Patch: Red Bank Councilwoman Kathy Horgan was nominated as the Democratic candidate for State Assembly in the recently redistricted 11thlegislative district.
- Over 100 people attended the 37 district campaign kickoff for Senator Weinberg, Assemblyman Johnson, and Assemblywoman Vainieri Huttle, along with County Clerk candidate John Hogan, Freeholder candidate David Ganz, and Chairman Stellato.
- Senator Lautenberg and Congressman Payne were in Newark with National Urban League President Marc Morial for a rally to support the his Urban Jobs Act of 2011, which would provide $200 million over five years to get urban 18-year-olds to 24-year-olds trained and employed.
- Amid reports of a targeted mail scam in New Jersey designed to extract payments and private financial information from Hurricane Irene flood victims, Senator Menendez urged the U.S. Department of Justice to use its full force to protect vulnerable victims and consumers.
- Senator Lautenberg recognized Hispanic Heritage month.
- Senator Menendez called on Senate Republicans to stop blockage of his bi-partisan bill to extend the programs under the landmark Combating Autism Act for another three years.
- Senators Lautenberg and Menendez announced the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has provided more than $35 million through its Severe Repetitive Loss Program for flood mitigation projects in New Jersey.
- Senators Lautenberg and Menendez and Congressman Pascrell sent a letter to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Thomas Frieden asking the agency to investigate the health effects of chemical contamination in Pompton Lakes, including a scientifically controlled, full health study of the town's residents.
- Congressman Pallone sent a congratulatory letter to Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (Artsakh) President Bako Sahakian marking the 20th anniversary of Karabakh's independence.
- Congressman Holt called on the Justice Department to investigate whether the CIA broke laws helping the NYPD and said he doesn't remember being told about these programs or about the CIA's involvement: "I think this is pretty troubling," he said. "It sounds to me like profiling."
- Congressman Sires is sponsoring a bipartisan bill that introduces the competitive forces of optional federal chartering to one of the most important areas of financial services: the small loan market. H.R. 1909, the FFSCC Charter Act of 2011, would create an optional charter from the Comptroller of the Currency for nonbank lenders who choose to be designated as “Federal Financial Services and Credit Companies.”
- Congressman Rothman reminded residents that state tax deadlines have been extended for those impacted by Hurricane Irene.
- Congressman Andrews spoke on the floor of the House about what he called "the outsourcer bill of rights."
- Congressman Pallone announced grant awards totaling $10 million to help 129 organizations across the country become community health centers.
- Congressman Holt Op-Ed: Investments in science are more important than ever before.
- Congressman Adnrews voiced his support for keeping the Bellmawr Post Office open.
Under the Dome
- State Street Wire: Chairman Wisniewski sent a letter to fire chiefs and labor leaders seeking their attendance at a meeting in Wildwood of the Fire Safety Commission. Among other things, in the letter Wisniewski says: "While a formal plan has not yet been made public, the proposed changes are significant. For example, the Bureau of Fire Code Enforcement may be moved to the Division of Codes and Standards. In his letter, Wisniewski expressed concern that any attempt to reorganize the Division might affect fire safety and prevention. In addition, the lawmaker said in the letter he suspects the purpose of the move is "a thinly veiled attempt to seize the revenue that the Division generates each year."
- With New Jersey's unemployment rate at 9.5 percent, Senate President Sweeney has pledged to spend the next few months pushing a package of 10 or more job-creation bills.
- Senator Greenstein will re-introduce legislation that would allow New Jersey’s unemployed to receive on-the-job training to learn new skills and find employment. The “Back to Work NJ Program Act” would pair unemployed workers with New Jersey businesses in an eight-week training program.
- Senator Weinberg will be honored at the annual Teaneck Creek Conservancy Sustainability Dinner in recognition of her record on preserving New Jersey's environmental quality and specifically on her work to keep Teaneck green.
- Senator Lesniak attended a ribbon cutting ceremony at Montclair State University for the dedication of “The Heights” student housing complex, the first public-private partnership development completed at a State college under the New Jersey Economic Stimulus Act which Senator Lesniak authored.
- Assemblyman Schaer discussed the need for a plan to halt Passaic River flooding.
- The Greater Atlantic City Chamber will co-host a reception with the New Jersey State Chamber of Commerce to recognize Senate President Sweeney and Assemblyman Coutinho for promoting a favorable business climate in New Jersey.
- With elections officials preparing to print sample ballots for the November election, Assemblywoman Wagner touted legislation she's sponsored that would save taxpayers money by modernizing elections.
- Assembly Homeland Security and State Preparedness Committee Chair Quijano expressed concern about potential cuts to federal aid programs that affect public safety.
- Assemblyman Coughlin's second annual Bowl For Hunger event, held in partnership with the Raritan Bay Medical Center Foundation and Middlesex Water Company, raised more than $14,000 for Middlesex County food banks.
- With record flooding occurring throughout the Garden State over the last two weeks, Assemblyman Benson is pushing two companion bills he has sponsored to create a framework to identify and eliminate mold exposure in residential housing and quickly remove tenants from harmful exposure to these toxins.
- Assemblyman Coutinho Opinion: N.J. school conditions deteriorate from SDA inaction.
- Assemblywoman Wagner hailed the agreement reached between the state and environmental groups to allow for the resumption of the test cultivation of oysters in New Jersey waters, an environmentally beneficial practice she has been pushing for through legislation.
- As New Jersey students settle into the new school year, Assemblyman DeAngelo underscored the need for adequate funding for school districts that educate students at the highest performance level while maximizing use of taxpayer dollars.
- Assemblywoman Evans will deliver the keynote address at the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., Bergen/Passaic Chapter event.
- Assemblyman Schaer met with senior citizens on Monday and delivered some troubling news about the safety net.
- Assemblyman Chivukula organized a donation in which he distributed hundreds of backpacks stuffed with school supplies to students in New Brunswick's Paul Robeson Community School and Franklin Park's Pine Grove Manor School.
- Assemblyman Diegnan says voters Should Have A Say On Charter Schools.
- Assemblyman Conaway honored missing soldiers and prisoners at a POW/MIA ceremony.
- PolitickerNJ: At convention, Dems tap Singleton to replace Conners in LD7.
- Senator Turner sent a letter to Governor Christie asking for the state's assistance in preventing the Trenton layoffs from happening.
- Assemblyman Gusciora and Assemblywoman Watson Coleman expressed concern about the impact a 40 percent reduction in the Trenton Police force will have on public safety, which they said could have been reduced if Gov. Christie had not eliminated municipal public safety aid from the state budget.
- On Monday, the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee will hear from invited guests about issues surrounding the conversion of non-profit hospitals to for-profit status, at a time when impropriety and fraud has been alleged in the transfer of Hoboken University Medical Center (HUMC) to private owners.
- September 19
2011 MCDO Campaign Kick Off Dinner Rally
The Pines Manor, 2085 Route 27, Edison
Special Guest Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy
Assembly Candidate Sandi Lazzara “Kickoff to Victory” Cocktail Reception
Master of Ceremonies: Chairman John Currie
Location: Brownstone, Paterson
Cost: $75 per person
Karen Carroll for Assembly Meet and Greet
Home of Attorney Mary Ann Bauer and Andy Basko, 23 Ramsey Rd, Lebanon
Jim Schroeder for Re-Election to Atlantic County Freeholder Board
Mays Landing Country Club, Cates Rd., Mays Landing
Tea With Abigail Adams
The Somerset County Federation of Democratic Women is very pleased to invite the public to a Tea with Abigail Adams
Somerville Elks Lodge, 75 Union Avenue (Route 28), Bridgewater
Tickets: SCFDW c/o Carol Brady, 9 Lee Way, Somerville, NJ 08876.
- September 20
Assemblyman Gary Schaer, 36th Legislative District Cocktail Reception
The Graycliff, Corner of Moonachie Ave.& Moonachie Rd., Moonachie
- September 21
Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders & Passaic County OEM
10th Anniversary 9-11 Ceremony
Passaic County Public Safety Academy, 300 Oldham Road, Wayne
- September 22
Passaic County Democratic Committee Chairman John Currie’s Annual Cocktail Reception
Macaluso’s, 161 Rea Avenue, Hawthorne
Newark Mayor Cory Booker in support of Vin Gopal for New Jersey State Assembly, 11th District
Home of Nasreen & Ghulam Suhrawardi, 155 Mercer Road, Colts Neck
Cost: Friend: $150, Sponsor: $300, Host: $500, Patron: $1000 Vice Chair: $2,600 , Co-Chair: $5,000
- September 25
Atlantic County Democrats Meet and Greet
UAW Hall, Albany Ave., Atlantic City
Sussex County Democratic Committee’s Annual Wine and Cheese Party
The Westfall Winery, 141 Clove Rd, Montague
RSVP: Linda Adams 973-714-1646
Fundraiser in Support of the Hunterdon County Democratic Committee and the 2011 Hunterdon County Candidates Hosted by Senator Robert Torricelli
The Torricelli Barn, 127 Kingwood-Stockton Rd, Stockton
Assembly Candidate Sandi Lazzara Meet & Greet at the Mill
The Mill, Main St., Little Falls
Donations Gratefully Accepted
- September 27
Fundraiser for Senator Bob Smith
Radisson Hotel, 21 Kingsbridge Rd, Piscataway
$26 to $2600/pp
RSVP: Christine Mosier at 732-752-3100
Dennis Munoz for Sheriff Fundraiser
Scales Grill, Gardner's Basin, Atlantic City
- September 28
Dennis Munoz for Sheriff
Sofia's Restaurant, Amherst Ave, Margate
- September 27
Fundraiser for Assemblyman Barnes
72 Buchanan Road, Edison, NJ 08820
- September 28
NJ FDW Meeting
Middlesex County Democratic Organization Headquarters
231 Bridge Street, Metuchen, NJ 08840
- September 29
Forum on the Future of Legislative District 35
Come Hear Candidate Wimberly's Platform
on Law, Public Safety and Education
The Brownstone, 351 West Broadway, Paterson
- September 30
Fundraiser for Assemblyman Chivukula
Royal Albert’s Place, 1050 King George Post Road, Fords, NJ 08863
- October 1
Assemblywoman Nellie Pou’s 14th Annual Woman’s Breakfast
9:00 AM-12:00 PM
Brownstone, 351 West Broadway, Paterson
Democratic 24th Breakfast at the American Legion
20 Yates Ave, Andover
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We will continue to have updates about news from our elected officials and the many campaigns across the state. There will certainly be more to come next week. Have a great weekend.
John Wisniewski, Chairman
New Jersey Democratic State Committee