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Wishful Thinking RedState.Org

XP at Media in Trouble

Question: What would you think if you saw a poll today about an election 1 year ago from now?

Answer: Probably not as much as the folks over at RedState.org.  I present to you yet another version of Republican wishful thinking, accompanied by despair, perhaps remembering the hope they must have held around this time last year when it was feared that Jersey would fall to Bush:

South Jersey Assembly Campaigns

First, credit where credit is due.  Definitely want to commend you guys for taking the Daily Kos template and making a local political blog dedicated to New Jersey politics.

I hope the site fosters discussion, and increases grassroots political activism throughout New Jersey!

I wanted to post quick links to some key Assembly races in South Jersey this year.  As you all know, the State Assembly is up for re-election, and with escalating property taxes and ethics problems in Trenton, Democrats face tough re-election campaigns this year.

Princeton Drinking Liberally gets some press

The Daily Princetonian wrote up a nice piece on Princeton’s new Drinking Liberally chapter, of which I’m one of the co-hosts (princeton.drinkingliberally.org).

Students and community members gathered in the basement of The Annex restaurant last Thursday for the third meeting of Drinking Liberally, one the newest political associations for both students and community members. Beer, wine and soda sustained attendees as they discussed politics, organized a protest of Condoleezza Rice’s visit to the University and chatted about personal experiences.

 Drinking Liberally is a chapter of a national organization that brings liberal thinkers together in local bars and restaurants. It began in New York two years ago, and has now expanded to more than 100 chapters nationwide.

 Princeton’s chapter — started by Josh Weitz GS, College Democrats president Frances Schendle ’06 and Juan Melli GS — was founded to follow up on the success of the Frist Filibuster last spring, which protested the “nuclear option” proposed to eliminate the Senate filibuster.

Corzine lead widens

Political Wire reports that a poll conducted by Penn, Schoen, Berland – a Democratic polling firm, shows Sen. Jon Corzine (D-NJ) leading Doug Forrester (R) 46% to 33%. Some recent polls showed the gap closing to between 4 – 10 points, so because of the partisan nature of the source, take this with a grain of salt.

Forbes: “strongly” supports Forrester; “tax plan won’t work”

Last night, Former Republican presidential candidate Steve Forbes said he “strongly” supports Doug Forrester despite disagreeing with his positions on abortion and gay rights.

“Well, unfortunately, you have to realize that even if he is [pro-choice and pro-gay marriage], he is to right of most of New Jersey. But it’s like a menu and you gotta go with the best pick,” Forbes told PoliticsNH.com

And during the gubernatorial primary, Forbes came to the obvious conclusion that “Forrester’s property tax plan will not work”. (mailer from Schundler campaign on left)

So Let’s summarize: Forbes disagrees with Forrester’s social AND fiscal policies, yet “strongly” supports him because Doug is to the “right of most of New Jersey”. In one shot, Forbes managed to throw his integrity out the window, and at the same time unmasked the facade of a moderate that Forrester has tried to fool New Jerseyans into buying.

Home Rule in New Jersey Raises the Cost of Government

The following was published in Blanton’s and Ashton’s on July 29, 2005.  I am reprising that piece as this, my first contribution to bluejersey.net.

The Courier News reported recently on tax assessor Edwin Kerwin and his wife Marcia. Edwin is the tax assessor for eight towns. Marcia has four towns. Edwin’s annual salary for his eight towns is “$238,076, which places him third in earnings in New Jersey for government employees with multiple jobs.” His wife earns $158,212 for her four government jobs. Together they earn around $400,000 a year, plus all the benefits (including pensions) that go with the jobs.

Frederick Millman is the tax assessor for Brick Township at an annual salary of $111,998. He’s also the Tuckerton tax assessor for $32,360 and the Eagleswood tax assessor for $38,600 a year.

I’ve been thinking the same thing some of you undoubtedly are: how do I swing a deal like that?

Zogby Polling on the ’05 & ’06 Races

The latest results of the 2005/2006 Zogby tracking poll are out, with a mixed bag for New Jersey. While the recent Quinnipiac poll showed the gubernatorial race tightening, Zogby shows Corzine pulling away from Forrester from August to September. I wouldn’t call any single poll definitive, but this one sounds about right, with Corzine’s 9.6% lead sounding more realistic than the 20% lead from the Star-Ledger/Eagleton poll or the 4% lead from Quinnipiac.

But the 2006 Senate race generates some much more interesting numbers. As we all know, if Corzine becomes Governor, he’ll appoint someone to complete his term in the Senate. While there’s been speculation as to whom Corzine might pick, there’s really no clear front-runner.

Zogby only polled on State Senator Tom Kean Jr. as the Republican candidate and asked about a number of Democratic candidates, beyond the three listed in the 2006 results. Of the three potential Democrats listed, only one beats Kean in a hypothetical match-up. Acting Governor Codey beats Kean Jr. by 4 points, 44.6% to 40.6%. Kean Jr. beats both Rep. Bob Menendez 42.6% to 34.4% and Rep. Rob Andrews 44% to 36.4%.

Granted, these numbers are likely a function of name recognition. And whoever replaces Corzine will have one year in the Senate to gain something of an incumbency advantage. However, Codey’s solid performance in the poll does make a strong case for his appointment, even if the poll doesn’t mean much otherwise. While most analysts are looking at New Jersey’s Congressional delegation for Corzine’s replacement, Codey has indicated that he is interested in the seat.

A few days ago, over at BOPnews, Stirling Newberry floated another possible name for the appointment — Paul Krugman. His name was obviously not included in the Zogby poll, but I know there are quite a few Democrats who wouldn’t mind the pick. I’ve included a poll below to gauge your thoughts on whom Corzine should pick.

Let’s give New Jersey back to the Proprietors!

I’m going to recycle a posting that i did on Dkos last month, with appologies to those few who saw it then:

Yesterday I got a mailing from the Board of Chosen Freeholders of Union County, NJ, where I live.  In it, along with the usual bunch of self-congratulatory promotional boilerplate wherein the freeholders took credit for everything short of the sun rising this morning, was this statement:

 We are supporting a citizens’ convention of property taxes and any other measures that would reform New Jersey’s system of property taxation.

Well, I have a modest proposal for the citizens of this convention:  Let’s give New Jersey back to the Proprietors.