Of taking on a leadership position within the Democratic majority in the New Jersey State Senate. A challenge that will involve helping to bring together our caucus of 24 disparate individuals around common goals important to the voters we collectively represent. A challenge to work within the leadership team to develop those same common goals where we can and to influence that team to continue moving a progressive platform.
Will it be easy? Will we win on every issue? Of course, not! But can we agree to again move a jobs package and demand that the Governor sign these bills. To pass marriage equality. To find ways to fund poor women’s access to healthcare and reproductive freedom. To make sure that we have excellent public schools all over our state. To respect unions which represent the hard working folks of New Jersey. To make certain our hospitals are providing the best possible care for their patients and not just for their investors. To work toward a government completely transparent and accountable only to its citizens. And to protect our environment.
Yes, all these are challenging issues with a recalcitrant Governor. Sometimes, they might even involve compromise on things less important. That’s how we actually get things done through the legislative process.
I believe that I am up to this challenge, and do face them with a sense of reality. I know some of them will take time and very hard work. I know some of them will be undermined by Governor Christie, and perhaps by others closer to us. But I will fight hard. I think I know how to do that privately when appropriate and publicly when necessary. I’ll be reporting to the BJ audience as regularly as possible. I’m sure you’ll continue holding our collective feet to the fire!
Election post script. Sorry Governor, you tried to influence this election and you lost!
Right here in Bergen County, Mr. Christie raised large amounts of $s for the District 38 republican legislative candidates who had enough resources to go on network TV. But we will still have Senator Bob Gordon and Assemblywoman Connie Wagner, along with new Assemblyman-elect Tim Eustace. In Bergen, we also elected two Democratic Freeholders (including almost former Assemblywoman Joan Voss), the Surrogate and the County Clerk. The Governor made appearances for republican candidates around the state. He stood up with 50 of his candidates to ask all of them to join in taking on the Judiciary in New Jersey.
Yes, Governor, you can spin it any way you wish – but you lost and the Democrats won. Now it is up to we Democrats to work hard so that our citizens are the real winners.