For July the BLS reported, NJ unemployment was at 9.7%, a slight increase over both last month and the same month last year, and above the national average of 9.5%. Realty Trac reported home sales in NJ declined precipitously by 55%, from 7,206 in June to 3,196 in July. This is bad news for New Jerseyans, but does Governor Christie care?
On Tuesday the governor signed into law the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority. In a press release Assembly Majority Leader Cryan said, “Quite simply, this is all about jobs for New Jerseyans.” In the governor’s press release the word “jobs” is not mentioned once. Instead it refers to loftier notions of “investment, continuity and economic growth.” Does he care that NJ unemployment is higher than the national average? Does he care about jobs for New Jerseyans?
In order to help people buy homes and reduce current unsold inventory, Assemblyman and Budget Committee Chair Louis Greenwald sponsored a bill to establish a New Jersey Homebuyer Tax Credit Program. Christe vetoed it saying “It would undermine our 2011 budget.” Does he care that home sales fell 23% in May, 27% in June, and 55% in July? Does he care how this impacts New Jerseyans?
In the Quinnipiac poll released today Governor Christie is presented as “winning the hearts and minds of NJ voters who approve 51% – 36% of the job he is doing.” Christie, however, seems remarkably detached from the lives of real people. He couches so much of what he says in terms of costs, finances and the budget, and he seldom talks about the impact of his actions on individuals. His single-minded focus on budget cutting and reducing the size of government satisfies his limited and short-sighted approach to governing. But does it satisfy those who are un-or-underemployed, concerned they might become un-or-underemployed, unable to sell their house or unable to buy a house. How many others are worried about not receiving a rebate, increased public transportation costs, smaller class sizes, or fewer municipal services? Do you get any sense he sympathizes with these people? When will New Jerseyans from the “Real World” strike back at “Christie’s World?”