Author Archive: ken bank

Dems must unite NOW in CD-3

I was dismayed to read this post in PolitickerNJ that some Ocean County Dems are thinking about challenging Burlco Freeholder Aimee Belgard for the CD-3 seat. I can’t think of anything more outrageous, especially coming from a County organization that couldn’t even deliver a respectable showing for Cory Booker, and got crushed in the general election. These clowns couldn’t deliver pizza for Dominoes, much less deliver votes for a congressional candidate.

The reason John Adler won in 2008 was that Dems were united while the GOP wasted money and resources in a bloody Burlco v. Ocean primary dog fight. The same might happen again as Establishment RINOs and Tea Party crazies go at it including, possibly, Steve Lonegan who says he’s interested in the seat and, thanks to the incompetency of OCDems, won more votes in OC than any other county in the state, including his Bergen home.

Though I live in OC I do not begrudge the nominee coming from Burlco, especially someone with the resume and credentials as Aimee Belgard. Besides, Burlco has always carried the district for Dems, and likely will continue to do so in the future. Ocean County Dems couldn’t carry water for Gunga Din, much less carry the County for a Democratic candidate.

There is a real opportunity to retake the seat for Dems, provide OC and Burlco Dems unite now in support of Aimee Balgard. Let’s not waste precious money and resources in a divisive primary.  

Did Christie benefit from insider trading?

This is not about Todd Christie. It’s about Christie crony and top fundraiser Steve Cohen whose firm, SAC Capital, pleaded guilty to insider trading and has to pay $1.2 billion, the largest fine in history. Aside from the money Cohen personally contributed, how many other employees of SAC donated to Christie campaigns? Assuming Cohen and his partners/associates all personally profited from those insider trades, how much of that money ended up in Christie’s campaign account?

Hopefully some enterprising journalists and/or investigative reporters will provide some answers. We all know how, as US Attorney, Christie traded no-bid contracts in exchange for generous campaign donations. No reason to think he wouldn’t take money he knew or suspected was derived from profits on insider trades, and there is no reason to think he would return that money unless he was publicly pressured into doing so.

Of course this will all likely come out as Christie prepares to run for President in 2016. I’m sure Rand Paul will do his due diligence when it comes to opposition research, just as Steve Lonegan did when he slammed Christie for those no-bid contracts during the that nasty street fight known as the 2009 GOP primary for Governor.  

In the meantime it can’t hurt for Democrats to demand Christie return the money he got from Cohen and his associates at SAC Capital. Anything that weakens Christie and tarnishes his image will make him more vulnerable and susceptible to working with Democrats and agreeing to some of their demands, especially with regard to school funding and property tax relief.

Rand Paul bashes Christie

The opening shots of the 2016 campaign have already begun with Teapublican presidential candidate Rand Paul blasting Christie for those self-promotional TV ads about Sandy. My guess is that as polls show Christie with a lead over other GOP contenders, the sniping will continue and even increase. There is nothing dirtier and nasty than a GOP primary, partly because there is little difference on issues so candidates tend to differentiate themselves based on personal issues and ethical conduct, and on that basis I believe Rand Paul has more than enough ammo to go after Christie

Although Buono’s loss was disappointing, there are a lot of silver linings to be had. Christie is a lame duck, and a very weak lame duck without coattails as I am sure Rand Paul and other GOP opponents will attack him for being all show and no substance. In fact, I won’t be surprised if at some point national GOP leaders start looking around for a moderate alternative who doesn’t carry as much personal baggage (Scott Brown maybe?). The end result is that Christie will need Democrats more than Democrats need him. Without Democrats there will be no tax cuts, and without tax cuts Christie has no record to campaign on. I mean, without tax cuts what issue does Christie have to campaign on against his Tea Party opponents? If he can’t deliver tax cuts in his own state, how does he have any credibility promising tax cuts at the federal level?

Finally, I will be very surprised if Christie campaigns in Iowa. He can’t be that stupid, though I expect he’ll make a few trips there the next year or so just to keep people guessing. As a caucus state the voters who tend to show up usually represent more the extreme wing of either political party. And look at the history, this is a state that gave Pat Robertson second place in 1988 (after Bob Dole who lost that year anyway) ahead of George Bush, who went on to win the nomination and the general election. Ironically, Bush won in Iowa in 1980, but then lost to Reagan in New Hampshire. And of course we all know who won the 2012 Iowa caucuses, President Rick Santorum. My guess is Christie will make his stand in New Hampshire, where voters are more concerned about economic issues than they are about gay marriage and abortion, and which is all the more reason why Christie has to deliver on tax cuts if he wants to be taken seriously in that state. I’m assuming Sweeney and other Democratic leaders believe this as well, and will be able to extract concessions they otherwise would not be able to get. At this point I am tempted to joke that I hope Sweeney squeezes Christie so hard that . . . but I won’t.

Anna’s Army Is Back!!

Lonegan may be retired, but the Tea Party isn’t giving up the fight. They’re wiping off their boots, polishing their swords, dusting off their tricorner hats, and adjusting their tea bags as they prepare to put boots on the ground and ride to the sound of the guns. Yes, Anna’s Army is back and this time they promise to take no prisoners.

The only question I have is whether the Monmouth GOP will throw in the towel and hand Little the nomination, or put up their own candidate for what most likely will be another “Lost Cause”.

Did Christie make a terroristic threat?

I’m sure he was joking but if I was an electrician at the Meadowlands I wouldn’t be very amused. In fact, if the Governor wants to joke about killing electricians for an accident at the Superbowl, I can make a joke out of filing a criminal complaint against him for making a terroristic threat. Maybe somebody will, I don’t know. I’m sure if an NFL player or coach made a similar comment they would be suspended, and rightfully so. If I was head of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which I believe  endorsed Christie, I would be rather upset about it and issue a statement admonishing the Governor for disrespecting the people who work at the Meadowlands.

Being 30 points behind in the polls, and with nothing to lose, Barbara Buono could get some traction out of this. She could issue a statement condemning the Governor for his comments and demand he apologize to the folks who work at the Meadowlands, especially the electrical workers. At least it will likely get some media attention that has been lacking up until now. But I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. She’s probably too busy coming up with excuses blaming everybody else for the likelihood she ends up a minor footnote in NJ political history right next to Peter Shapiro.

Did Christie make a terroristic threat?

I’m sure he was joking but if I was an electrician at the Meadowlands I wouldn’t be very amused. In fact, if the Governor wants to joke about killing electricians for an accident at the Superbowl, I can make a joke out of filing a criminal complaint against him for making a terroristic threat. Maybe somebody will, I don’t know. I’m sure if an NFL player or coach made a similar comment they would be suspended, and rightfully so. If I was head of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which I believe  endorsed Christie, I would be rather upset about it and issue a statement admonishing the Governor for disrespecting the people who work at the Meadowlands.

Being 30 points behind in the polls, and with nothing to lose, Barbara Buono could get some traction out of this. She could issue a statement condemning the Governor for his comments and demand he apologize to the folks who work at the Meadowlands, especially the electrical workers. At least it will likely get some media attention that has been lacking up until now. But I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. She’s probably too busy coming up with excuses blaming everybody else for the likelihood she ends up a minor footnote in NJ political history right next to Peter Shapiro.

Did Christie make a terroristic threat?

I’m sure he was joking but if I was an electrician at the Meadowlands I wouldn’t be very amused. In fact, if the Governor wants to joke about killing electricians for an accident at the Superbowl, I can make a joke out of filing a criminal complaint against him for making a terroristic threat. Maybe somebody will, I don’t know. I’m sure if an NFL player or coach made a similar comment they would be suspended, and rightfully so. If I was head of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which I believe  endorsed Christie, I would be rather upset about it and issue a statement admonishing the Governor for disrespecting the people who work at the Meadowlands.

Being 30 points behind in the polls, and with nothing to lose, Barbara Buono could get some traction out of this. She could issue a statement condemning the Governor for his comments and demand he apologize to the folks who work at the Meadowlands, especially the electrical workers. At least it will likely get some media attention that has been lacking up until now. But I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. She’s probably too busy coming up with excuses blaming everybody else for the likelihood she ends up a minor footnote in NJ political history right next to Peter Shapiro.

Did Christie make a terroristic threat?

I’m sure he was joking but if I was an electrician at the Meadowlands I wouldn’t be very amused. In fact, if the Governor wants to joke about killing electricians for an accident at the Superbowl, I can make a joke out of filing a criminal complaint against him for making a terroristic threat. Maybe somebody will, I don’t know. I’m sure if an NFL player or coach made a similar comment they would be suspended, and rightfully so. If I was head of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which I believe  endorsed Christie, I would be rather upset about it and issue a statement admonishing the Governor for disrespecting the people who work at the Meadowlands.

Being 30 points behind in the polls, and with nothing to lose, Barbara Buono could get some traction out of this. She could issue a statement condemning the Governor for his comments and demand he apologize to the folks who work at the Meadowlands, especially the electrical workers. At least it will likely get some media attention that has been lacking up until now. But I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. She’s probably too busy coming up with excuses blaming everybody else for the likelihood she ends up a minor footnote in NJ political history right next to Peter Shapiro.

Did Christie make a terroristic threat?

I’m sure he was joking but if I was an electrician at the Meadowlands I wouldn’t be very amused. In fact, if the Governor wants to joke about killing electricians for an accident at the Superbowl, I can make a joke out of filing a criminal complaint against him for making a terroristic threat. Maybe somebody will, I don’t know. I’m sure if an NFL player or coach made a similar comment they would be suspended, and rightfully so. If I was head of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which I believe  endorsed Christie, I would be rather upset about it and issue a statement admonishing the Governor for disrespecting the people who work at the Meadowlands.

Being 30 points behind in the polls, and with nothing to lose, Barbara Buono could get some traction out of this. She could issue a statement condemning the Governor for his comments and demand he apologize to the folks who work at the Meadowlands, especially the electrical workers. At least it will likely get some media attention that has been lacking up until now. But I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. She’s probably too busy coming up with excuses blaming everybody else for the likelihood she ends up a minor footnote in NJ political history right next to Peter Shapiro.