promoted by Rosi
So, there are traditions in the New Jersey Democratic Party. One of them is that the gubernatorial nominee gets to select the Democratic Party Chair for the duration of the campaign. If the nominee loses, the choice is revisited and sometimes they stay, sometimes they don’t.
Barbara Buono is the Democrats’ presumptive nominee for governor. Other people — Steve Sweeney, for instance — had a chance to put up a different candidate they found better or more palatable. None did, and Buono is so far in the lead that she’s put forward her choice for party: Assemblyman Jason O’Donnell.
O’Donnell and Sweeney have a history, especially since O’Donnell was part of an effort to overthrow the current leadership of which Sweeney enjoys power. So Sweeney is publicly, loudly and with great fervor opposing Buono’s pick.
Against tradition. Because he has power. And position.
And had he wanted someone else he could have run someone other than Buono against her. But he did not, and essentially acquiesced to her getting the nod. In doing so he should have acquiesced to her getting to pick her chair, at least for six months. But he didn’t.
So who is to blame for this division in the party? Is it the presumptive nominee following tradition, or is it the powerful party leader going against tradition.
Bob Ingle says it’s the one following tradition:
Sen. Barbara Buono, likely opponent of Gov. Christie’s re-election, not only can’t get any traction for her campaign, she continues to divide her own Democratic Party. Senate President Stephen Sweeney says Buono’s choice of Assemblyman Jason O’Donnell of Hudson County to be state Democratic chairman is a bad decision and that O’Donnell has done nothing to prove he’s worthy to lead Democrats.
Bob Ingle is an opinion writer hiding in a reporter’s job, which is how he presents himself on 101.5, and even in his books (the quote is from his blog). And he’s never afraid to give opinion and slant things to fit his world view. But this is little more than carrying water for one side against the other.
The real problem here is that the odds are Buono will not win the race. Her choice will be there until November when things will be reviewed. If she does really, really well and loses maybe O’Donnell keeps the job. But if she gets beat as most expect, Sweeney et al can claim her crew was weak and replace him.
It’s a tempest in a tea pot, fanned by the media.