Tag Archive: Sandy Bill of Rights

Profiles in Courage

How Senate Republicans voted in the Sandy Bill of Rights veto override today. Override would have required at least three Republicans to support the bill package that got unanimous Republican support just weeks ago when both houses passed it with all Dems and all Republicans voting yes. Today, Senate Republicans showed nothing beyond obedience to Gov. Christie.

The vote – below:

Sandy Bill of Rights veto override vote today – Will any Republicans break from Christie?

UPDATE: Senate session has begun, and can be viewed at the NJ Legislature’s media page.

Last month, both houses of the Legislature unanimously passed a bill to help fix the Christie administration’s disastrous Sandy relief process. That was the Sandy Bill of Rights, spearheaded by Steve Sweeney, who went out on a listening tour through some of the communities most impacted by the superstorm to hear from frustrated residents who say they were left in the dark by the very process they counted on to help them in the months after the storm.

The bills address accountability to residents: requiring clear explanation of eligibility, the right for residents to know the status of their application and what additional info they may need to provide, and clear explanation why an application was rejected or wait-listed.

Makes sense. But Christie gutted the bill package in a conditional veto, which he refers to as a conditional approval while describing the Sandy Bill of Rights as a “raft of partisan political findings, all styled as ‘rights'”. This, that every Republican in both houses voted for, because they saw how the state’s recovery efforts were failing people and knew they could improve that. Since then, some Republicans seem to have forgotten that, siding with Christie and against their own earlier vote.

In the Senate Session that starts in about an hour, a veto override vote is scheduled. Without at least three Republicans deciding their responsibilities to Sandy victims are greater than adherence to the governor’s will when he is wrong, the vote will fail. The stakes are very high, particularly for Sandy-impacted New Jerseyans who feel tangled in Christie’s ineffective recovery policy. We’re going to find out what and who is really important to the Republicans today. I hope at least three do the right thing.

The Senate Democrats did a Sandy Override by the Numbers. Below the fold.

Flip Flops on the beach, Not on the Senate Floor

The override vote on Senate President Sweeney’s “Sandy Bill of Rights” originally planned for tomorrow’s Senate session has been postponed. Chris Donnelly from Sweeney’s office explains, “We are postponing the override vote on the bill of rights until the 19th as a couple of our members are unable to attend this Thursday’s voting session.”

We only need about three Republican votes to override Governor Christie’s veto. No Republican Senator voted against the original bill. In fact they applauded it. Now Republican Senators are reneging on their vote and refusing to override. They have circled the corral, protecting Governor Christie, and ignoring the clamors of Sandy victims. “Flip flops belong on the shore, not on the Sandy Bill of Rights,” as Fair Share Housing says.  

NJ Spotlight explains, The measure would simplify the application process for Sandy recovery programs, require “plain language” explanations to storm survivors of their status, and give people greater rights to appeal if they’re denied funding.

An Asbury Park editorial points out, “Christie is embarrassed by the accusations of state mismanagement of Sandy aid programs and has tried to lay the blame elsewhere. He doesn’t want a Sandy Bill of Rights because it implies there’s a need for reform.” The bill might benefit from minor changes to assure it does not conflict with federal law. Nonetheless, the root of the problem is Christie’s mismanagement of Sandy recovery, culminating  in a recent court settlement requiring him to target Sandy funds to hardest hit communities, addressing language barriers in recovery programs, and helping renters and homeowners left out of recovery to date.

The bill remains of paramount importance as a means to assure that past failures are not continued and that the needs of Sandy victims are addressed appropriately. Constituents, particularly those who have Republican legislators, should write, call, email or meet them. Conceivably some minor changes in the bill, particularly in regard to federal law, might assuage some Republicans. Either way, what is important is the continuing need of those affected by Sandy not the need of a failing governor.

Join the Thunderclap: Override Christie’s Veto of Sandy Bill of Rights

Promoted by Rosi. Want more on this? Marie Corfield’s post is a good place to start.

On Thursday, June 12th the New Jersey Senate will vote on the override of the Sandy Bill of Rights.  There was unanimous support when the Bill passed the Senate and the Assembly but the Governor sent back a conditional veto with over 100, many petty, changes.  

The Republicans are sticking with their Governor, not their constituents. We need three of them to override the veto.

Sign up for this Thunderclap to create massive social media pressure Thursday morning as legislators head into caucus.  Thunderclap will generate the message through twitter and/or Facebook for you and we will make sure the Republicans get our message.

It is easy and fast – we all need to act.

Thunderclap on Sandy Bill of Rights veto override

NJ GOP is not stronger than Superstorm Christie

Next Thursday June 12th the legislature plans to try a veto override of Christie’s CV of the ‘Sandy Bill of Rights.’ Here’s why it matters. And what you can do – right now. Cross-posted at Marie Corfield. Promoted by Rosi.

DropDead (new Chris Christie version)For those readers old enough to remember, this image is a parody of the fierce reaction to President Gerald Ford’s infamous but false response to NY City’s 1970’s financial crisis. Even though he never said those words, he might as well have because his reaction to the city’s request for financial help was part of his political undoing.

My point is not to rehash what happened 40 years ago so, gentle readers, please limit your comments to current events. If you want the back story, read this NY Times piece. In a nutshell it was a classic case of liberal vs. conservative values locked in a game of Chicken. The only difference is that unlike many of today’s elected officials, both sides blinked: they came together and worked it out.