News Roundup & Open Thread—Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Good morning, Blue Jersey fam! We cleared our non-partisan elections yesterday. Now what?

Baraka Romps Chaneyfield Jenkins, Coasts to Reelection

Once a self-styled outsider, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka scores another term with 77 percent of the vote. Now, in 2018, Baraka had the backing of the political establishment and even his one-time rival Sen. Cory Booker.

Paterson Councilman Andre Sayegh Elected Mayor

Sayegh will succeed Mayor Jane Williams-Warren, a retired Paterson municipal clerk elected by the City Council to replace former Mayor Jose “Joey” Torres.

Torres resigned upon pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit official misconduct, stemming from city employees being assigned to work for a company owned by his daughter and nephew, and is serving a 5-year prison sentence.

In Trenton, Gusciora, Perez, Head to a Runoff

Tuesday’s top two vote-getters in the mayor’s race — candidates Paul Perez and Reed Gusciora — will square off in a June runoff to decide who will hold the city’s top spot. A candidate must secure more than 50 percent of the vote to win in the municipal election, which no candidate did.

However, Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes thinks “the establishment” will rally around Gusciora, a 20-plus year Assemblyman.

Team Pallone Sweeps Long Branch

Long Branch Councilman John Pallone, brother of Congressman Frank Pallone, ousted 28-year Republican Mayor Adam Schneider yesterday, rode to victory as Democrats took back all five council seats. The sweep means an entire turnover of the city’s mayor and council.

Leading with Fear

State Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick labeled Gov. Phil Murphy’s fiscal agenda “scary and extreme” and said the Democratic governor’s young administration is disconnected from Republicans and members of his own party.

Scaring constituents is a pretty weak tactic.

You Know What’s Actually Scary? Guns

More than three-quarters of the guns used in crimes in New Jersey over the first quarter of the year came from outside its borders, Gov. Murphy says.

Don’t Live Here? Can’t Drive Here

We’ve reported on this before, but in the “no, that’s not a green light to racism” category, Leonia has restricted 60 side streets from nonresidents to prevent New York-bound commuters from driving through the town to get to the George Washington Bridge. Since the ordinance was implemented in January, it has faced several lawsuits, and now New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal is calling the decision “legally invalid.”

NPR has picked up the story.

Jersey Roots, West Virginia Reach?

Looks like Patrick Morrisey, the guy trying to take out Sen. Joe Manchin in November’s U.S. senate contest in West Virginia went to high school in Edison, is a Rutgers grad, and failed to unseat Mike Ferguson in the 2000 Congressional primary in CD-7. Guess his staunchly pro-life, pro-gun stance was ahead of its time for Republican primary challengers in New Jersey.

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