The Star-Ledger Chooses Daggett

Promoted by Jason Springer: Here’s JRB’s taken on the Star Ledger Endorsement of Chris Daggett.  What do you think and what influence will it have on the race?

The Star-Ledger has endorsed independent gubernatorial candidate Chris Daggett.

Only by breaking the hold of the Democratic and Republican mandarins on the governor’s office and putting a rein on their power will the state have any hope for the kind of change needed to halt its downward economic, political and ethical spiral.

This is essentially how I feel, too. Republicans are reckless in running state government. Their only care is for the politics of the moment, kicking the financial can down the road. Not acceptable. The Democrats have turned a blind eye to the rampant corruption and self-dealing for so long, they’re walking into walls. They’ve made it tough to give someone on their line a vote of confidence.

For me, the question is whether Daggett is capable of corralling the Democrats and Republicans in the legislature? Actually, I think it’s very possible. Without being under the thumb of any one party, I think Daggett could make the kind of changes that Christie won’t and Corzine is too timid to. Though I could still change my mind.  

Comments (16)

  1. speedkillsu

    before they must retract the endorsement ?

  2. Nick Lento


    …….. but he must accept the fact that the following critique from the SL is valid…..

    “….his shortcomings as a leader are serious. They’ve become all too apparent in his dealings with public employee unions, an often unruly Legislature and a Democratic Party that is, at best, an ethically compromised ship and, at worst, harbors a corrupt crew.”

    Corzine will win this, if only because Christie is a certifiable total asshole and because Daggett is still seen as a mild mannered Republican who hasn’t much of a chance (though I be he comes in in the 20’s at this rate and denys the winner a majority). But a weak plurality for Corzine is almost as bad as a defeat.

    Corzine needs to kick ass and run, balls out, as an aggressive progressive and commit to being in effin CHARGE for the next four years.

    That means directing Ann Milgram to use RICO statutes to fight systemic corruption (or find an AG that will).

    It wouldn’t surprise me if 20% of our state’s economy is adversely affected by the cumulative effects of corruption.

    That means not letting NJ be run by a few bosses (and their clients)…and being willing to go public/straight to THE PEOPLE when he has to bang heads together.

    If people really believed that Jon Corzine would get truly TOUGH on the people that gave us this mess, he would win by 20+ points even in this three man race!

    Then (with a massive win) he would have a mandate to truly kick some ass!

    I’ve been making variations of this argument here for months and no one has seriously questioned (let alone refuted) it.

    I had a chance to shake Governor Corzine’s hand at the recent LG debate……obviously, there’s no time in that situation to deliver a spiel, bit I did simply say to him “Kick Some Ass”….and he nodded in the affirmative.   I hope that he gets the message from someone somewhere that to be able to govern effectively he needs to win decisively and to do that he needs to elevate the intensity/muscularity of his message on both stylistic and substantive levels.

    Jon Corzine didn’t get where he is by being a cream puff……we all know he has to have been as hard as nails on occasion.   He must let the people of New Jersey know that he’s a tough AND smart AND decent guy!!!

  3. proud2Bliberal

    Although I moved from NJ, I am still in touch wirh professional colleagues from NJ on e regular basis.  I hope that the Corzine campaign realizes that the people who were laid off during the telecom bust of 2001-2003 have still not gotten back on their feet.  The situation is exacerbated by the fact that now everybody is that many years older in the face of age discrimination.  Age discrimination is not as bad in NJ as it is on the West Coast.  However, you have highly educated and competent people – people with advanced degrees in science and MBAs – going from one temporary job to another with large gaps between periods of employment.  The job losses in 2001-2003 arose in part because of financial shenanigans at the top at a major telephone equipment company, i.e. corporate corruption as opposed to political corruption.  Further, for those who were able to retire or took early retirement, retirement benefits have been whittled away and have been the subject of class action lawsuits.  It is not clear how much attention Corzine has paid to this sector of people, but this represents hundreds of thousands of votes and the need to put such people – old Bell Labs and old AT&T – back to work still exists.  Job creation is more on the minds of these voters than any diatribes or personal attacks.  People will vote in favor of their edonomic survival, whatever that entails.

  4. speedkillsu

    The Star-Ledger  violates state regulations that prohibits debate sponsors from endorsing candidates before the completion of the debate. the SL is a sponsor of the  October 16 gubernatorial debate, … when will they rescind the endorsement ?  

  5. princetonblue

    I thought the most damning part of the Star-Ledger’s endorsement was their comment that Corzine wasn’t the commander-in-chief of the NJ Democratic Party but was mostly a puppet of the Democratic bosses.   Everyone said that Sweeney’s battle against Codey wouldn’t affect the Governor’s race, but I see the boss politics it exposed (again!) as affecting the SL’s endorsement decision.

  6. princetonblue

    “Puppet” was too strong a word to use.   Here’s the actual quote:

    “The governor may be the nominal leader of his party but there’s mounting evidence its commanding figure is George Norcross, an unelected South Jersey political deal-maker who’s currently rearranging the Democratic leadership in the Senate and Assembly.

    Corzine is the chaplain on a pirate ship, not really its captain.”

  7. carolh

    WAS signed folks.  By Jon Corzine, no less. It may take a little time, but that is the biggest nail in the coffin of the Party Boss era that is coming to an end. Corzine is not a puppet of the Bosses. He was the first Governor to openly disagree with Boss Joe – which led to Joe’s ultimate downfall up here.  

    The Real Bergen Dems would never have had a chance to change anything were it not for the foresight of Jon Corzine to endorse Loretta Weinberg for State Senate in 2005.

  8. Dvd Avins

    Most of the corruption happens in municipal (and sometimes school district) level. Getting rid of the corruption must mostly be done at the local level, too.

    The only way a governor could have a large impact is by having an unusually high public profile and using that popularity to actually take control of the Democratic Party apparatus. (For better and worse, it has to be the Democratic Party, because that’s who controls the larger municipalities with the bigger budgets.)

    The state constitution and Title XIX (the election law) combined with living in the New York and Philadelphia media markets make it unlikely that any governor will achieve such control over either party. But an independent has no chance.

    I agree that corruption is such a big issue that if Daggett really could make a big impact, that would make him a better governor than Corzine. Hell, if Christie were down 20 points in the polls, I’d consider voting for Daggett just as a protest vote.

    But as it stands, Corzine is best on the issues, Christie is worst on the issues. One of the two of them will win. And Daggett would be no more effective at fighting corruption than Corzine. That all makes the choice pretty easy, if not especially pleasant.


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