Author Archive: A.V. El-Hepta

Christie’s Enablers

Chris Christie’s popularity in New Jersey can be attributed to three factors:

  • A fawning mainstream media.
  • Republican legislators in lock-step with his treacherous policies.
  • Complicit Democrats.

The first two enablers are starting to erode. News media are staring to question Christie’s effectiveness. Republicans may actually override one of his vetoes for the first time (Port Authority transparency). Now, about that third enabler?  

NJTV Moving to Newark

NJN NJTV announced it is moving its studios to Newark. That’s fine. They should have a presence in the state’s largest city. But given that Assistant Governor George Norcross rules from Camden County, shouldn’t they at least have a satellite studio in South Jersey?

Where are the Moderate Republicans?

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, immediately after the election, a prominent Republican U.S. Senator “denounced the ‘radical right’ for kidnapping the Republican Party and assailed the ‘kooks, zanies, nuts, and hecklers, the absolute lunatic fringe.”

It’s hard to believe that a Republican would tell the truth about his party, but it did happen. The article appeared in the Inquirer on November 8, 1964 and the senator was Pennsylvania’s Hugh Scott. The election was the trouncing of Barry Goldwater.

Such candor from the party today is virtually non-existent. Message discipline is executed to a tee, and any so-called “moderate Republican” is ostracized and purged.

The press portrays Chris Christie as a “moderate.” Probably because he occasionally does things that tweak the rank-and-file like work out a deal with Senator Sweeney to retain the state’s chief justice. But as the Chairman of the Republican Governor’s Association and as an all-but-declared presidential candidate, Christie has embraced the radical right-wing agenda and puts himself and his wealthy cronies ahead of the needs of the people he has sworn to serve.

Given the outcome of this week’s election, perhaps that’s a wise move for him. Or maybe not. With the Republican takeover of the Senate, look for a backslide in the economy, more income inequality, and an institutionalization of right-wing extremism. With a few more years to go as New Jersey’s governor, look for Christie’ economic right-wing policies to cause further problems for him and for us.

Hugh Scott is dead. So is moderate Republicanism. It’s up to the Democrats to effectively call out the GOP for what it is.

Cut out the middle man

It’s long been the practice in the state legislature for aides to illegally cast votes for absent members. Now they want to change the rules to allow a member to count as “present” even when absent and just phone in votes.

Why not go all the way, cut out the middle man, and just have George Norcross phone in the votes for all the South Jersey members?

Where were you in 2013?

Promoted by Rosi. smh.

The NJ State Democratic Committee sent out a fundraising e-mail this morning with the subject line: Stop Chris Christie.

Where were you guys in the 2013 gubernatorial election? AWOL!