NJ climate crisis activists lobby Congress
Ananya Singh is 16.
The climate crisis is a very real threat to my generation.
Soak the Rich graphic in yellow
NJ ranks 12th-highest in income inequality.
And NJ has a budget crisis.
Babs Siperstein at 2016 Democratic Convention
Honoring the late Equality Rights Heroine BABS SIPERSTEIN
Gov. Murphy’s eulogy
The Political Power of Women’s Anger
WATCH. Before pink pussy hats, Hillary, the Midterms.
History of ignoring women’s anger to keep organizing down. Boom, like that. WATCH.
Covington Catholic HS boy
That white boy smugness.
Do you know it as well as Jim Keady does?
Green New Deal House protest
Green New Deal is PRIORITY.
Where does our new House delegation stand?

Latest Posts

New Survey USA Poll

Survey USA has Corzine 49, Forrester 41

So this month we have the following:

10/3: Zogby: Corzine leading by 9 points
10/6: Rasmussen: Corzine leading by 7 points
10/9: Eagleton: Corzine leading by 7 points
10/10: Marist: Corzine leading by 2 points
10/11: FDU: Corzine leading by 8 points
10/11; Strategic Vision: Corzine leading by 6 points
10/14: SurveyUSA: Corzine leading by 8 points

I think that the “candidate in free fall” meme should pretty much be dead at this point.  Especially since back in July and August FDU had Corzine with a 7 point lead and Rasmussen had him at 8.  This is actually a remarkably consistent race with just a few outliers: the 2 of Marist, the 4 of Quinippiac, and the 18 of Eagleton.

Election Protection workers needed for November

From the NJ for Democracy blog:

NJ Election Protection 2005 Seeks Volunteer Poll Monitors November 8

WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?

Election Protection 2004 found numerous voting problems in NJ, particularly in urban areas and areas with high student populations:

  • Polls in Middlesex County were improperly denying students the right to vote provisionally
  • Many students who had registered on campus drives were not on the voter rolls.
  • Flyers with misinformation were circulated in an attempt to intimidate voters who may have had judgments against them or were late paying rent, utilities or child support obligations.

See the extended entry for more information…

Medicare’s Nero and Bush’s Fiddle

This is the third part in a series on Medicare B.  It was previously posted at Old Town Review Chronicles.  You can read more from Xpatriated Texan at his personal blog or check in on the corruption in Hudson County.

While President Bush zooms around on Air Force One, talking to pre-screened crowds about his plans for Social Security, blithely ignoring the reality that Americans hate his ideas, he is totally ignoring the real emergency in America’s Social Safety Net.

Take a look at the latest report from the Medicare Trustees (http://www.ssa.gov/history/pdf/tr00summary.pdf) (sorry, I can’t get it to work as a link).  I’ll summarize for you: Medicare is in deep doo-doo.  Let me hype some hysteria before I save the universe.

The DI (Disability Income) portion of the fund will begin paying out more than it takes in no later than the year – wait for it – 2007.  The HI (Hospital Insurance) portion will last a full three years later and begin losing money in 2010.  The worst case scenario is that both will be flat broke by 2012.  However, they are supposed to last until 2023 and 2025 respectively.  

To me, burning very expensive jet fuel in Air Force One to run around playing Chicken Little about Social Security while totally ignoring Medicare is tantamount to auditioning for the role of Nero.  All we need is a fire and a fiddle.

James Carville What Do You Know?

Cross Posted on Media In Trouble

When did you know it, and more importantly, why aren’t you telling any of your Democratic friends?  We are left on the sidelines, gleaning from press reports when one of our very own political operatives’ wife Mary Matalin was involved in the now implicated White House Iraq Group (a.k.a. WHIG).

Remember 2 years ago when HBO had that ill fated series K Street?  Where the luxurious and lustrous life of lobbyists was intermingled with actors playing out sub-plots?  I thought for sure George Clooney had a winner here.

Then around the 5th week or so, the leak investigation hit Carville and Matlin’s lobby firm.  Matlin was probed, then Carville, and the series took a turn towards less of the reality of politics, and more towards the lives of the fictional characters.

Either way the show got cancelled and little was ever portrayed regarding the Leak Case.  However, as of this week, it seems that the WHIG has come back into play here.  So the scrambled camera shots in the HBO series we know were totally real, and we know that their is information that perhaps James Carville can help us figure out from his very own involvement.

So Mr. Carville, I am sure you have discussed the issue with your wife, what is it that she knows from being on the inside?

Why aren’t you helping those of us here in Left Bloglandia uncover such things?  

If Matt Cooper can come clean I am sure you can do the same?

The Meaning of Negative Ads

As I have watched the Corzine and Forrester television ads in the last few weeks, I have been surprised by the amount of negative ads that Corzine is running.  

By negative ad, I mean ads that attack the opponent on a particular issue:  (e.g.: “Joe Citizen’s plan to clean New Jersey’s sidewalks will raise our taxes and is a costly disaster”) without explaining how you would do it better (“Josephine Citizen will help communities to have clean sidewalks without raising our taxes”).

I’m not an opponent of negative ads all together.  I’ve read the political science studies and I know that going negative can help to open the gap in a race, even as the negative ads suppress turnout.  My point here is that Corzine has been going negative for the last few weeks and this suggests at least two things:  His people had internal numbers suggesting that Forrester was gaining AND they expect the race to stay tight.

Forrester has gone negative as well, but he’s behind and going negative is an obvious strategy in this circumstance.  But Corzine has gone negative while in the lead.  What’s the deal?

Free Ad Idea for Corzine Campaign

Typical Somber Baritone Narrator:

Doug Forrester says he will accept MORE tax payer dollars should he be elected governor…

Jon Corzine has pledged to forgo his salary as governor…

Doug Forrester has made millions by funnelling tax payer dollars to his pocket…

Jon Corzine has made his money the old fashioned way, he worked hard and earned it…

Doug Forrester, isn’t it about time you STOPPED taking tax payer dollars?

Doug Forrester, Wrong for New Jersey.

Fading shots of Doug in a casino or something would be nice as well.

“Begone you shameless toadlicker”

Guess who said this:

Later Hank probably made the connection between eating the toad and consequent thoughts that he was really a caterpillar.

And this:

The next time you run across someone whose bahavior has an extra-dimensional aura about it, assume the worst, point your finger and say, “Begone you shameless toadlicker.”

Hint: it’s one of the two gubernatorial candidates. For the answer (and to read much, much more), click here.

It’s a 6-8 point race

Yet another poll is out. This one has a pretty small margin of error of +/-3% so it’s useful for confirming previous polls. Corzine is holding steady, but Forrester is gaining a little ground. All of the motion in the numbers over the past 2 months is within the margin of error. Still, this poll seems to confirm that at this point, this is a 6-8 point race.

Strategic Vision  10/10  9/16  8/18
Corzine (D)         46    (47)  (50)
Forrester (R)       40    (36)  (40)

The Marist poll a few days ago showing a 1 point lead (44-43) for Corzine was clearly an outliear – the small sample size of 300 voters might explain that.

Other recent polls, all with a 7 or 8 point difference:
Star Ledger (10/3-6) 44-37
Rasmussen (10/4): 45-38
Farleigh Dickinson Univ (10/4-9): 48-40

Cronyism isn’t only Rapant on the Federal Level, Check your Backyard

According to documents from the Harrison Township town council, Assembly Candidate and Harrison Mayor Phil Rhudy is sacrificing the citizens of his town for nepotism and campaign contributions.  Take this press release from the Dems in District 3.  

“SPRAWL CZAR” RHUDY LETS FOX GUARD THE HENHOUSE ON PLANNING BOARD

Major Campaign Contributor Given Seat on Board; Rhudy Gives Job To Wife That Puts Him on the Sideline

Tonight is another Planning Board meeting in Harrison Township. And like every other planning board meeting since Phil Rhudy became mayor of Harrison Township, Phil Rhudy will not be there to protect the interests of his constituents. Although it is typical for mayors to serve on the planning board of their town, Harrison Township is different.  That’s because Mayor Rhudy has chosen to give his wife the job of planning board secretary and therefore render himself unable to serve and make critical policy decisions when it comes to growth management in his town.

But it wasn’t enough to stop at one huge conflict of interest when it comes to the planning board. Rhudy created a second conflict of interest when he appointed Robert Pacilli, owner of RJP Builders to the planning board. Not only does this mean that Rhudy is beholden to developers, it also shows that cronyism is at play at the expense of the citizens of Harrison.

Suzanne Holst Rhudy is one of the most highly-paid planning board secretaries in New Jersey, making $32,000 a year (the maximum salary allowed by Harrison law) plus benefits, including dental coverage.  On three separate occasions, the citizens of Harrison Township have paid for dental work for Mrs. Rhudy. They have also paid her travel expenses to attend several seminars.

“Mr. Rhudy does his constituents a disservice when he chooses not to serve on the planning board,” said Russ Oster. “Harrison Township residents are clearly concerned about the sprawl that is infesting their community. Unfortunately Rhudy has sent a clear message that he puts nepotism and the interests of his campaign contributors before those of the people who he was elected to serve.”

Robert Pacilli serves on the planning board as Phil Rhudy’s appointment.  Widely regarded as the largest builder in Harrison, Pacilli recently made headlines for suing Woolwich Township to fight their open space plan.  Pacilli is owner and operator of RJP Homes and has donated thousands of dollars to the Rhudy and Zee campaign and hosted an elaborate June fund raiser for Rhudy and Zee. Attending that fundraiser was a who’s who of developers in Gloucester County.

In fact, besides the $3,000 in contributions from Doug Forrester that are currently the subject of an Attorney General’s investigation, and the $6,000 that came from the Harrison Township Republican Club, which is also under investigation for failure to file campaign finance reports, nearly all the rest of Rhudy’s campaign funds come from those looking to add to the sprawl of Harrison Township.

Clearly they have already gotten their money’s worth from Mayor Rhudy. The number of houses built in Harrison during Rhudy’s time on the Town council has skyrocketed. Anyone spending their commute home crawling along Route 322 can attest to the devastating impact that the “sprawl czar” Phil Rhudy has had on the infrastructure of Harrison Township.

But perhaps none have gotten more from their investment in the Rhudy campaign than Mr. Pacilli. In exchange for the fund raising support, Pacilli now gets to set the growth policy for Harrison Township. Given Mr. Pacilli’s dislike for smart growth laws and open space planning, residents of Harrison should brace themselves for more traffic and more sprawl.

“This is a classic case of putting the fox in the henhouse,” said Senator Steve Sweeney.  â€œI’m fighting everyday to preserve open space and farmland in Gloucester County and to provide a sound strategy for smart growth. That’s why it is so disheartening to see Phil Rhudy shirk his responsibilities. I need partners in Trenton who will stand with me on these issues, not with developers.”

So two questions remain. The first to Phil Rhudy:

What is the price of a seat on the Harrison Planning Board? If you are willing to sell out to the highest bidder in Harrison, what is for sale when you go to Trenton?

The second question is to the Sierra Club:

This is the person you have entrusted to support your interests in Trenton? The man who sells his seat on the planning board to the biggest developer in his town?

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