Author Archive: Rosi Efthim

Christie continues his Outraged Tour on Morning Joe

Jon Corzine’s been on Morning Joe quite a few times during this campaign, taking his good-natured grilling from host, and former Republican congressman, Joe Scarborough. And Joe’s been pretty loud in wondering why Christie’s been avoiding the show, and whether Christie could even stand up to a morning show interview, after turning down repeated invitations.

So, this morning Christie was on, and he used the opportunity not to outline for a national audience any details of an economic plan for New Jersey, or clear up why his medical mandates position shifts so much. No, he grabbed the national spotlight to whine that Corzine called him out on his size. It’s too much to expect him to answer the substance of that ad, that Chistie used undue influence and bad faith to manipulate a cop to let him off punishment for unsafe driving.

Helping Christie out on message was Morning Joe regular Jim Cramer, the sputtering host of CNBC’s Mad Money, who specializes in going postal on a whole host of perceived outrages. Cramer said Corzine’s painting Christie as fat sleazy guy with a corrupt family who’s against mammograms and “Satan incarnate.” Watch:

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News Roundup & Open Thread for Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2009

Dead heat

  • Quinnipiac University poll: 41-40 Christie-Corzine, with Daggett polling at 14. Two weeks ago, it was 43-39-12.

    Wind at his back and a canvasser at your door

  • Having unionized working people behind him gives Corzine a huge boost.

    Jersey teachers have a suggestion for Mr. Christie:

  • Read your own education policies.

    Wonder why those FOIA requests on Christie’s record are stonewalled?

  • This might be a clue.

    Christie, Daggett, and a chair

  • Corzine didn’t go to Gannett, he was in Elizabeth.


  • Was an Oct. 5 email by Corzine Deputy COS Mark Matzen, obtained by Star Ledger, simply an effort to tell the story of how a state is coping with a national economic crisis, or an inappropriate mixing of campaign and administrative efforts?

    Paper or plastic?

  • Democratic Sheriff candidate George “Bob” Armstrong is campaigning at the supermarkets of Ocean County.

    America’s Favorite Playground

  • By the bright lights of Atlantic City, unemployment.

    A couple Jersey farms, going solar with federal dollars

  • Only 2 farms in the Garden State are getting USDA funding for renewable energy projects. They’re both in the same county.


  • A police detective who has investigated major crimes for 11 years as part of an FBI task force in NJ is charged with using a cooperating witness in a fraud scheme.


  • Jersey Shore:One-fifth of all the federal beach-fill money allocated nationally is coming to NJ, $20.7 million.
  • Jersey City: gains 1,600 finance jobs off of Manhattan.
  • East Orange: Why did a 21-year-old man end up naked and dead in a police holding cell?
  • Camden: Going into debt by nearly $1.2 million to settle a lawsuit.
  • Dover: Paid an administrator $250K to go away.
  • New Brunswick: Rutgers is suddenly more bike-friendly.
  • Livingston: School wants to make money off the sun.
  • Essex County: Volunteers just planted 46,000 flowers, bushes, plants & trees at South Mountain Reservation.
  • Somerset County: Shifting and tilting towards the Democrats.
  • Warren County: Human Relations Commission looks at homelessness.
  • Ewing: Angry council members override a Mayor’s veto.
  • Corzine, Booker & the Blue Jersey Road Runners Club

    Republican LG candidate and Monmouth Sheriff Kim Guadagno made headlines and a kerfuffle a few weeks ago when she said she was afraid on the streets of Newark. A softball lobbed directly at white suburban voters, particularly the women. But when Christie/Guadagno seemed to start its slide down the polls, it was the very public stumble on the state’s mandate on mammograms for New Jersey women.

    This morning, in a coda to both Republicans’ missteps, Gov. Corzine joined Cory Booker for a run through Newark, and the chance to talk about the importance of mammograms, right now during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


    Joining Corzine and Booker, both regular runners, were about 40 Newark Police Academy members, a bunch of Corzine staffers, and a group of breast cancer activists with stories to tell.

    It was also the Blue Jersey Road Runners Club’s inaugural run with the Governor, with 8 members showing up for the early morning run in Blue Jersey tees, with I’m Jon’s running mate stamped onto their shirts. The Blue Jersey Road Runners Club is a bunch of mostly-progressive, mostly-Democrat folks who like a little politics with their exercise. The club was named after the homeblog by its coach, Passaic DFA member Joe Osborne. Our Jeff Gardner (Passaic DFA leader) is also a member and ran this morning along with Osborne, Glen Rock councilman Byron Arnao, Haledon Mayor (Passaic Freeholder candidate) Domenick Stampone, Hawthorne Councilman Joseph Wojtecki, former Glen Rock councilman Tom Ludlum, former VP NJ NARAL Heidi Ehman, Garfield committeeman Bryan Walensky and Andy Darezzi, a recently returned vet of the War in Afghanistan.

    BJRRC’s always looking for new running mates. More fun pix after the jump.


    News Roundup & Open Thread for Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2009

    Jon Corzine’s running mates

  • If you’re driving in to work this morning in Newark, you might see Mayor Cory Booker running alongside Gov. Jon Corzine on a fun run through the streets of Newark to raise awareness for the need for NJ’s mammogram mandates & women’s health. Running with them will be 9 members of the Blue Jersey Road Runners Club, progressives all. Kick off is Military Park at 8am.

    NJ Citizen Action endorses Corzine

  • Citing longstanding commitment to expanding health insurance and passing paid family leave.

    Christie would rather there were two

  • With Daggett apparently taking more votes from Christie than Corzine,the Republican can be heard downplaying the Independent.

    Babs Casbar Siperstein, at the D.C. gay rights march

  • Babs, president of NJ Stonewall Dems, first-ever transgender person to sit on the Democratic National Committee, and member of the Blue Jersey community, spoke at yesterday’s Gay Rights March & Rally. Video, here & here.

    Corzine would consider gas tax hike for transportation projects

  • In his second term, the Governor would consider hiking NJ’s fourth-lowest-in-the-nation gas tax, or diverting money from other projects to keep the fund for transportation projects solvent.

    US: Ferriero-Oury firm overbilled Bergenfield

  • “This is a money and property fraud, as well as an honest-services fraud,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Rachel Honig said during the trial of the former Bergen County Democratic chairman.

    GOP Assembly candidate sells sex toys

  • And she’s running against Donald Norcross.

    Corzine signs EnCap into law

  • Heavily amended.

    Weinberg bristles about the LG debate format

  • And continues hard-charging on Christie’s record.

    Steve Sweeney & Cleste M. Riley talk open space

  • Harvesting cabbage on a crisp fall day, and speaking out with farmers in favor of Public Question #1.

    Talking property tax alternatives

  • Celeste M. Riley and John J. Burzichelli in NJ-3 advocate tighter spending, streamlined government and consolidating services as they face two Republican challengers who are not running together.


  • Today is the last day to register to vote for the November election. How & where to register.
  • Vote by mail rocks. And check out the Dems snazzy voting tools.


  • Mountainside: Robert Viglianti, Mayor of Mountainside for 21 years, dies at 68.
  • Paterson: Resurrecting Hinchliffe Stadium, home to a Negro League team.
  • Monmouth County: Dad involved in international custody battle, to testify before Congress.
  • New Brunswick: Rutgers is still waiting for its swine flu vaccines.
  • News Roundup & Open Thread for Monday, Oct. 12, 2009

    Hey, NJ: Not so much for the square dancers and dentists

  • Got plenty of specialty license plates, so please can we have one for Gold Star Familes who’ve lost a soldier in one of our wars? K, thx.

    Corzine, Christie

  • Tracking where some of their campaign cash comes from.

    Profiling Christie as US Attorney

  • Brazen, bold, but sometimes on cases that didn’t pan out.

    Labor (hearts) Jon Corzine

  • How unions love the Governor again and why Christie lost them.


  • Star Ledger may have violated state regulations prohibiting debate sponsors from endorsing before the debate. In their application to sponsor the 10/16 debate, Star Ledger agreed not to endorse till the debate was over. Wally has it.

    He’s wonkish & sober, but Chris Daggett is stirring up the election

  • “It’s like the ’73 Mets,” he says. “Ya gotta believe!”
  • Daggett, focusing on details.

    Jon Corzine

  • In his history, confident, but never preoccupied by the matter of personal popularity.

    NJ & VA

  • What does a win or loss in these 2 states mean for Obama, and for the Democrats? An embarassment to the White House? Jolt of energy to the Republicans as rebuild their party and raise funds for new candidates still to be recruited.

    Consumer protection for Jerseyans

  • Making it easier for consumers to file complaints.


  • How it can happen and how it’s hitting South Jersey hard, like a ton of overleveraged bricks.

    Cleaning up the river

  • Phase One of the Hudson River cleanup of PCB’s wraps up.


  • River Edge: A crop of freshly-minted, brand spanking new Americans.
  • Ridgefield: Will Mayor Anony Suarez’ – only mayor in the summer corruption sweep not to resign – arrest really affect anything?
  • Passaic: Funny, you don’t look a day over 90.
  • Bergen County: Dem Freeholder candidates outraise 3-1.
  • Wayne: Liking some of the traffic light cameras.
  • Weekend News Roundup for Oct. 10 & 11, 2009

    Star-Ledger endorses Daggett

  • Endorsement appears to be largely a rejection of both major parties.

    Christie vows he will do all he can to block marriage equality

  • Possibly even going so far as pushing to amend the state constitution.

    Poll shows Obama link helps Corzine

  • Corzine gaining among Obama supporters. 72% of likely voters supporing Obma say they will vote Corzine, up from 66% a month ago. Christie’s losing support from Obama backers, dropping from 22 to 17%.

    Anti-Obama protest called for Burlington Twp Monday

  • Ooh, I bet that Nobel prize really steamed them. Uh, more, I mean.

    Corzine opposes electronic gambling at race tracks

  • Atlantic City casinos fear it would eat into their revenues. Under a 2008 deal, the casinos are providing $90 million over 3 years to help the struggling horse racing industry. In return, a guarantee that no Video Lottery Terminals will be permitted at the tracks while the agreement is in force.

    Civil rights leader & attorney Ray Brown, dead at 94

  • “If you don’t fear anyone you can accomplish anything,” Brown Jr. recalls his father telling him and said his father adopted a tenacious approach to civil rights that would bring him around the country defending black clients, oftentimes at his own expense.

    Jersey City man sues bank over overdraft policies

  • Accuses PNC Bank of violating NJ’s consumer fraud act by manipulating the order in which it subtracts charges from accounts in order to maximize overdraft fees.

    Linden challenges Kearny heliport plans

  • Cites a danger to Jersey City.

    Residents shaken by Swastikas found on Edison playground

  • More than a dozen of the ugly marks, found by a child. Fourth anti-Semitic incident during the Jewish holidays over the last several weeks.

    Meet the leader of an attempt to oust the Point Pleasant Beach mayor

  • Leader of recall effort testifies in Superior Court in a hearing about the efforts legitimacy.

    Ninos de la Amazonia

  • A very cool piano teacher picks up a camera.  
  • News Roundup & Open Thread for Friday, Oct. 9, 2009

    Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize

  • Just 8 months into his presidency, and for “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” New Jersey’s Obama voters and volunteers: this would not have happened without you. High-fives, all ’round.

    NJ’s first-ever LG Debate

  • Weinberg, Guadagno & Esposito, with Corzine, Christie & Daggett watching. The debate, from Monmouth U., and our live-blog.

    Have you thanked your campaign’s field staff today?

  • In the past year, 8 elections tallied so closely that one vote could have changed the results and 66 were decided by a margin of less than 1%. Every. Vote. Counts. Say it with me.

    Gov. Corzine details how he would close $8B budget deficit

  • Smaller contribution to state pension system, further reduction in state workforce, anticipated additional federal stimulus money/grants, not fully funding state aid to local schools, and possible continuation income tax surcharge on the wealthy.

    South Jersey

  • Here’s where your federal stimulus money is going.

    Pass universal health reform

  • NJ Policy Perspective: Without change, insurance premiums will rise, more employers will drop coverage, middle class will suffer. NJ’s public health and economy are now threatened.

    Phil Kenny steps down

  • After pleading guilty to taking a $5K bribe, Kenny resigns as Councilman for Jersey City’s Ward B.

    Kim Guadagno & Donald Cresitello

  • New Jersey Immigration Policy Network urges Morristown’s mayor off the 287(g) program, which deputizes police as immigration agents. Only 79 law enforcement departments in the program across the country, including Morristown and Kim Guadagno’s Monmouth County.

    Indicted, unpaid, but still working

  • Bayonne’s Assemblyman Anthony Chiappone is introducing legislation for stiffer sentences for shooting a police officer with a stolen gun.

    13 of our counties are breathing too-dirty air

  • EPA to New Jersey counties: Fix this within 5 years.


  • Jersey City: Coolest tent ever.
  • Roselle: Councilman Jamel Holley offered pre-trial intervention in ballot-tampering case.
  • Ocean City: Considers public funding for political campaigns.
  • Hunterdon County: Revamping transit system to save money.
  • Cumberland County: Relatively even in fundraising.
  • Morris County: A 31-year-old Denville Dem stands in the way of a longtime county surrogate’s re-election to a 4th 5-year term.
  • Would Christie opt out?

    In a story out today, we hear a compromise is being “very seriously considered” by Senate Democrats to establish a national public option for insurance coverage, but one that individual states could opt out of: Huffington Post:

    In private, aides on Capitol Hill say that the opt-out option remains one of several proposals being debating as a compromise to a straightforward national public plan. But, they add, it is quickly winning plaudits within the caucus.

    That of course raises the serious question of whether a Governor Chris Christie, who so casually dismisses mandates New Jersey has in place to protect its citizens in the face of profit-hungry insurance companies, would opt out if given that chance. Wanna bet?

    The whole idea of “compromising” on public option is idiotic, because the point is scale and bulk negotiating, which you lose if all Republican states opt out (h/t bytheshore). Then there’s the issue that before we give Republican states the chance to opt out of a public option, we have to deal with those Democrats – Congressional and Presidential – who would be completely letting us down if that was allowed to happen.

    There’s also this view, which suggests we let state opt out happen, if that’s the only legislation we can get … and let GOP electeds have to deal with voters denied what they need.

    Chris Christie would sell us out in a second.

    Using Christie’s “babysitting”remark as an organizing tool

    The Corzine campaign wants to make sure you’ve seen Chris Christie’s dumb stunt mocking pre-Kindergarten as “babysitting.” In fact, the campaign is banking that it will piss you off so much that you’ll jump to their nicely-done website and start voting right now.

    An email to supporters from Campaign Manager Maggie Moran, the mother of kids 2 and 4, contains a link to a video with Christie being grilled by Steve Adubato about whether he’d take back the “babysitting” reference. Christie tries to make it seem like the remark was taken out of context, and “not perjorative.” So the video shows you the remark in full, in context, and as it was said during a debate with his primary opponent Steve Lonegan. It’s perjorative as hell. Watch:

    Simple story. Christie ran to the right to compete with Steve Lonegan for his party’s ideological right-wing. But he’s got trouble whenever his words and deeds are pinned on him now that he’s trying to run to the center. Mandates and mammograms tripped him up big-time. And now his equating sensible early childhood education with “babysitting” is coming back to bite him in the ass.

    Here’s the campaign’s pitch for early voting from home. It’s easy, and worth doing.  

    News Roundup & Open Thread for Thursday, Oct. 8, 2009

    I had to post this overnight, hours before some of the morning’s news gets published on line. If I miss anything, please feel free to add it in Comments. Thanks, guys – – – Rosi

    Get your feisty on

  • Tonight, hotshot progressive Sen. Loretta Weinberg meets Sheriff Kim “Not Streetsmart” Guadagno at the LG candidates one-shot debate, at Monmouth University, along with Daggett’s Frank Esposito. Expect fireworks. Got a ticket? Doors open 7pm.  Debate closes the Forum on the Future of New Jersey Coverage includes News-12 & 101.5FM. Details here. Map/Directions.

    Obama’s choice for US Attorney for New Jersey, confirmed

  • Paul J. Fishman, of Montclair, recommended to the president by senators Lautenberg and Menendez, approved by unanimous consent in US Senate. A major step in ending the questionable practices of Chris Christie’s tenure, and its aftermath.

    Biden stumps for Corzine in AC

  • Rallying union forces with the VP, Corzine tells a fired-up audience: Election Day is Labor Day because you guys get it done every time.

    A new tool for early voting

  • Dems roll out

    Lobster tails, veal marsala, adult beverages

  • DeCroce accuses the Rahway Sewarage Authority of overspending on fluff and fun.

    NJ Comptroller to review audits of $8.7 million tunnel project

  • Corzine signs executive order, calling for transparency in spending on the commuter rail tunnel to NYC.

    Band of Brothers, killed together

  • The Pentagon confirms that all 8 of the soldiers killed Saturday in Afghanistan – including Sgt. Michael P. Scusa, 22, of Villas, N.J. – were from the same unit.

    Healthier moms & kids

  • WIC program moves to fresh produce and whole grains.


  • Jersey City: Pancakes help fund a lawsuit to vacate the results of Nidia Lopez’ election to Council.
  • Newark: Michelle Thomas, cutter of Newark’s deficit by $105 million, is appointed business administrator.
  • Parsippany: Independents hold the key to the local race.
  • Chatham: Considers a code of ethics.
  • Kearny, Lodi, Plainfield, Rahway, Somerville, Woodbridge: Contaminated sites there added to Brownfields list.
  • Bridgewater: Cell tower issues, and arguments.
  • Upper Pittsgrove: Salem County marks its 200th farm preservation.
  • Haledon: Council’s first black member, resigns.
  • Irvington: Considering weekly furloughs.
  • Rahway: In the wake of the troubled tenure of Bobby Akbar, a veteran councilman is named to succeed him.