We have to wait to see the actual full-length budget, but after a long sojourn our governor is back with the short version – his Budget Address – seemingly earnest and trying to make nice, but still lecturing us with little changed in his policies and full of attitude. His opening remarks were tone-deaf when he tried to justify his absence and said thank you to the people of New Jersey for “allowing” him the privilege of running for President. He suggested he was in no rush to leave his post: “I intend to make the next two years great ones for our state.” Then he launched into his conservative principles of “fiscal restraint” and “advancing the hard reforms New Jersey needs.” Later he talked about budget items he would increase (good) but forgot to mention the cuts he intends. He also avoided talking about Atlantic City and his takeover plan.
- Christie’s Budget address as prepared for delivery. Read it here.
- A tough-love speech laying out a $34.8 billion state budget proposal including a $1.86 billion payment for the pension system.
- Are statements in his speech accurate? NJ Advanced Media fact checks him on over 30 points he made.
- NJ Policy Perspective: “Once again, Gov. Christie has given a budget address that fails to lay out a plan to invest in New Jersey’s transportation networks.”
- Christie, lawmakers disagree over N.J.’s transportation system ‘crisis’. (The Record)
- The yearly budget tango between Governor Christie and the state Legislature has begun, setting in motion months of discussion, political maneuvering and deal making. (The Record)
- Christie’s plan: Same old diversions from clean energy fund. (NJ Spotlight)
- Christie says his presidential run made him a better governor, but he faces an angry legislature. (Bloomberg News)
- Mixed messages to Democratic leaders: Governor appears to leave room for bipartisan cooperation, but some caveats and warnings are vintage Christie. (NJ Spotlight)
- Absent from his address: any mention of the financial troubles facing Atlantic City. (Press of Atlantic City)
- Democratic Response: from Assembly leadership. (video)
- If you do not agree with Christie’s proposals, Talaiporia suggests the best defense is a strong offense.
- An alternative budget: A Working Families Budget for NJ.
- “One line near the end of Gov. Christie’s budget address encapsulated the hypocrisy” that has transformed him from one of the most popular governors early in his first term to one of the most disliked. (APP editorial)
- On his big day a new poll yesterday revealed Christie is now the least popular he’s ever been in New Jersey. It found just 29 percent of New Jersey voters have a favorable opinion of him. Rutgers-Eagleton poll.
Alex Law, a challenger in CD1, debates Rutgers Professor Stephen Danley in Blue Jersey on the value of an anti-Norcross campaign.
Legal memo gave Mayor Fulop go-ahead to take super PAC funds.
Discord grows over the PA’s midtown bus terminal. In the meantime Port to move forward with $6.2 billion in airport projects. Port Authority filing asks to keep Bridgegate materials private.
Senator Cory Booker’s new book United: “This book is about my political and personal awakening… It is my attempt to honor the best of our history and the truth of my mentors, and to share some of the ideals they instilled in me: empathy and connection, responsibility and obligation and the urgent need to act… a clarion call to our country: to find common ground, and to advance the common good by joining together in common cause. Or put more simply, to be united…” Nice sentiments in a time of so much division.