Tag Archive: Town Halls

@ChrisChristie campaign Twitter account’s alive again after going dormant since 12 November, 2013

Don’t get excited, candidate Christie isn’t reaching out to you, New Jersey Twitter-verse. He’s advertising his upcoming town hall series to New Hampshire Republicans. The new you.

Christie is bringing his roadshow of BS to New Hampshire. Town hall-style events, which worked for him in New Jersey until they didn’t, will be a key part of his 4-day swing through the state, his longest to-date. Team Christie 2016 euphemistically titles these his “Tell It Like It Is” Town Hall Series, the first is April 15th. Christie is a master communicator, and excels at this kind of propaganda offensive, tightly choreographed and engineered to look like real engagement with the plebes. You know all this; we’ll have to wait and see whether it bamboozles the Granite State. He’s got to do something. He needs to snatch back their attention from Jeb (and everybody else), or at least redirect it away from his dismal record in New Jersey, the record credit downgrades, and the federal investigations hanging over his head.

Hat/tip to writer Nick Ripatrazone who caught the suddenly live Twitter feed before I did:

Ledger: Christie town halls vs. Baraka town halls

We’ve sent a lot of criticism Ledger’s way for its coverage of Gov. Christie, waving past some of his more insidious actions, shaking our heads at their Christie campaign endorsement so weird it made national news, then trying to snatch it back. But when they nail something, that deserves attention, too.  Like in their editorial we cited in this morning’s roundup. Even better, they nailed it 4 years ago.

First, some pullouts from their comparing Christie’s town halls, to those of Newark’s new mayor Ras Baraka. Of Christie’s events, they say:

  • They’re “not about real feedback from the public”

  • They’re held “during hours hours when working people can’t make it.”

  • “They draw mostly white crowds and seniors, and are skewed toward Republicans.”

  • They’re “pep rallies designed to build up the governor’s national brand. Christie is announced by a booming voice: “Ladies and gentlemen! Governor Chris Christie!” after which he makes his grand entrance from behind a blue drape.”

  • They’re engineered by an “army of political handlers.”

    By contrast, here’s what they say about Baraka’s:

    There were no such theatrics at Baraka’s first town hall meeting on Friday. This is because it was about communicating with the public, not community theater. How do we know that? Baraka scheduled the event for 7 p.m., to give as many people as possible the chance to attend. He even provided on-site babysitters for parents with small children.

  • If Cami thought Newark’s parents, students & teachers would fade back after Baraka’s win … Nope.

    The election Tuesday of Ras Baraka as Newark’s incoming mayor, a 54-46 win over Shavar Jeffries, was a mandate for the Newark Central High School principal on leave and city councilman who made opposition to Cami Anderson’s disastrous ‘One Newark’ school plan the centerpiece of his campaign. The very unpopular Anderson appears to be putting her efforts into ruining Newark’s public schools to make even more fertile ground for charter school tycoons.

    But Baraka’s win also solidified and fueled the community movements that early on put their growing power behind his win.

    In a few minutes, Newark students, parents and teachers will rally during the business meeting of Newark Public Schools, and then deliver to the Christie-appointed superintendent, Anderson, an education plan for city schools that was created by the Newark community, instead of imposed on them, a widespread complaint against Anderson’s unpopular formula. The new plan, called the “Newark Promise” was released at a Community Convention this weekend.

    What: Rally for the “Newark Promise”

    Where:  2 Cedar St, Newark, NJ

    When: Tuesday, May 20th, 5:00PM

    The plan was created out of a series of ‘Education Town Halls’ called by the Newark Parents Union, Newark Community Coalition Project and other groups. I attended some of those and they were extraordinary open and respectful meetings, in which community members – some of whom had clearly never been asked before – were encouraged to give their input about how they wanted their city’s pubic schools to run. High school students, both current and those recently graduated, were a big part of those conversations.  

    March NJ jobless numbers – NJ lagging behind

    You remember this guy, right? The headstrong governor here in the land of make-believe who propagandized the happy-talk of Jersey Comeback with banners, theme music and videos and jacked-up Republican campaign rallies passed off to the taxpayers public town halls in their best interest. How’s that working for ya? Christie quietly retired the banners a couple years ago, and knew better than to utter that phrase in his Republican National Convention speech that same year. Christie’s trying to make a case for himself as viable on the national scene beyond the RGA, tougher now because of the scandals. But we’re still left with the impact of some piss-poor state economic decisions over recent years, many of them his.

    Unemployment is up here, though the state is using terms like “flat” and “small dips” to describe it. New Jersey lost about 1,300 jobs in March, bringing NJ’s unemployment to 7.2%. That’s up from 7.1% this time last year, and lagging half a point behind the national rate of 6.7%.

    Democratic Chair Currie wants our money back from Chris Christie

    I’m on my way out, so little time to do more than post this as it landed in my Inbox. But it’s important, given rising questions of Gov. Christie’s longtime practice of mixing his self-serving political ambitions into governmental functions and passing the cost along to the taxpayers. His “town halls,” staged and stocked more like political rallies. are the hallmark of this. But there’s also the new media staff which video Christie mocking and insulting constituents daring to disagree with him, and blow them up to GOP supporters for YouTube hits. And the blatantly non-accountable and transparently self-serving waste of taxpayer money that is the Randy Mastro report, which may cost us $1 million, reads more like a defense document than a work of public service. To say nothing of what gets us here in the first place, harnessing top governmental employees and executives at the Port Authority to risk the safety of hundreds of thousands of commuters, first responders and school kids  on the busiest bridge in the world for some damn tomfoolery that tracks right into his inner office and closest confidants. Here’s the statement from the NJ Dems and Chair John Currie:

    Today, after Governor Christie’s so-called town hall meeting in Fairfield, the New Jersey Democratic State Committee Chairman asked the governor to reimburse the state taxpayers for the rising costs of his political endeavors.

    Specifically, Currie does not believe that any of the costs for the sexist “whitewash” compiled by loyal, hand-picked lawyers should be borne by state taxpayers.

    Oh, there’s more …

    NJ Attorney General to State Police: Stop photographing Christie Town Hall critics

    It seems that even Christie’s Acting Attorney General’s got his number. Acting AG John Hoffman just issued an order to cease photographing the governor’s critics at town halls “for security or any other purposes”. Or any other purposes? Team Christie wants you to think that after 4 years of town halls with little visible security, the sudden photographing of protesters by police dressed as civilians (or the ‘wanding’ is security-related. Funny how it all started as soon as critical mass was reached on Christie scandals, investigations of abuse of power and funds, and his failure to answer questions. As soon as those questions broke into his formerly tightly-controlled show-like events. Hoffman may or may not have Christie’s number. But he knows what won’t fly.

    ACLU-NJ is concerned attendees “be able to express their viewpoints without having to fear police officers photographing them and creating political dossiers on them. And Sen. Loretta Weinberg calls it a “Nixonian tactic” that had the effect of an “act of political intimidation.” They’ve got Christie’s number, too. Here’s AG Hoffman’s statement:

    “The State Police is responsible for the safety and security of the Governor and the public at town hall meetings. In doing so, the State Police are careful to guarantee that First Amendment rights are respected and the public – whether expressing positive or negative sentiments toward the Governor and his policies – have ample opportunity to make their positions known. That said, the Colonel and I have instructed the State Police to no longer photograph at these events for security or any other purposes.”

    Christie’s next town hall is tomorrow morning in Flemington. Doors open at 9am.

    Get ready for a new way Gov. Christie tries to control “town halls” – police intimidation

    Screen shot 2014-03-18 at 1.28.35 PM

    This is new. With Gov. Christie’s protesters no longer reliably staying outside his “town halls” he’s got the police snapping pictures of people who speak out against the governor – at a public event. This is a new level of intimidation.

    PolitickerNJ reporter Matthew Arco is reporting that a main dressed in plainclothes who later identified himself as a member of the NJ State Police, was seen taking photos of protesters at this morning’s Christie “town hall” in South River:

    “The man snapped pictures of the protesters as they stood up and shouted at the governor and also took pictures of the hecklers as they walked past him on their way out of the event.”

    Christie’s next “town hall” is:

    DATE: Thursday, March 20th

    WHEN: 10:30am Doors open at 9am

    WHERE: St. Magdalen de Pazzi, 105 Mine Street, Flemington

    RSVP: TownHall.Hunterdon@gov.state.nj.us

    More, plus video – below the fold. Photo is not via police, but tweeted by Tony Aiello, CBS New York.

    This one perfect little map says everything about Chris Christie the rest of America needs to know.

    This is a map of where the 1.3 million people losing unemployment aid tomorrow live. A map of the America Chris Christie wants to run from the White House in 3 years. Across that greyscale map from the Washington Post are states where Chris Christie will be jaunting as chair of the Republican Governors Association, raising truckloads of cash for other people like himself who serve the wealthy interests above all else. Now that the Christie operation shifts focus to selling him across those greyscale states like he was marketed here, national reporters are going to get a taste of the propaganda operation that has been our everyday for 3 years. There will be a lot of speeches before audiences stacked with the conservative and the curious. Christie’s campaign manager Bill Stepian is now installed at RGA. So the skills will transfer nicely.

    In New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie sold a Jersey Comeback with slick pageantry to stacked audiences, and Jersey political reporting took on the breathless tone of celebrity coverage. We’re going to see if the national press can be as easily dazzled and re-directed as some of the state press. The tenacity of the GWB story may be an indication Christie may have a harder time.

    Back to the map. In the sea-to-sea greyscale there is just one black spot: New Jersey, where 90k people will lose benefits. We get the biggest hit: 1% of our population. Chris Chrsitie’s Jersey Comeback. Slowest economic growth in the region. Unemployment consistently way higher than national. An economic picture – despite how much cash Christie’s shoveled toward corporations or how much he’s coddled the wealthy – so dull that Moody’s takes notice.

    This one little map says it all. Send it to somebody outside NJ.