Tag Archive: republicans

Not Ready for Hillary… or Bernie… or Martin…

While the media frenzy for the 2016 presidential election is already in full swing, there’s an election this year that arguably has more impact on New Jersey citizens. For the first time since 1999, the statewide races for the General Assembly are at the top of the ballot.

Most pundits predict little or no change in the balance of power in that chamber. The districts are gerrymandered to protect incumbents who already have a leg up on any opposition. Democrats are sure to retain control of the Assembly, aren’t they?

Bonnie Watson Coleman reminds Republicans it’s 2015

This was a few days ago, as new Member of Congress Bonnie Watson Coleman took to the House floor to ask her Republican colleagues to essentially mind their own business, and leave healthcare decisions to the women who have to deal with the outcomes:

Last week, I went to the House floor to formally ask my Republican colleagues to mind their own business, and leave healthcare decisions to the women who have to deal with the outcomes.

Posted by Bonnie Watson Coleman on Tuesday, March 31, 2015

QOTD: Lapdog Republicans won’t cross their supreme leader

The Star Ledger has an editorial up today blasting Assembly Republicans for failing to stand up and override a veto from Governor Downgrade of legislation that would have allowed SNAP enrollees to receive additional food stamp benefits when they qualified for $21 in home heating assistance. Then they provide us with the quote of the day:

“The override vote failed because the lapdog Republicans in the Legislature decided feeding children and seniors wasn’t worth crossing their supreme leader.”

Take the poll below and tell us if you think Assembly Republicans will muster up the courage to stand up to their fearless leader and override any of his vetoes before we have our next Governor?

Good luck to Bonnie Watson Coleman, Cory Booker, and the entire 114th Congress

Bonnie Watson ColemanRight now, a trailblazer in a silver pixie cut is being sworn in as a freshman member of the United States Congress House of Representatives. New Jersey has never before sent a Black woman to Congress; she becomes our first. BWC is a solid New Jersey Democrat – a former chair of the state party – but more importantly she’s been a person of bedrock progressive and Democratic  values who actually stood up for those values in recent years when lesser Democrats caved, undermined working families and helped Gov. Christie build his legend.

I’m going to miss her voice in the NJ Legislature, but I will be grateful to see it raised up in Congress.

Today is Swearing-In Day for the 114th Congress, a day of pomp and circumstance and of politics; today for the first time in 8 years, Republicans assume full control of Congress. Following the late-morning oath-taking, Congress convenes at noon, so directed by the Constitution.

In the Senate, VP Joe Biden will preside, with Mitch McConnell ascending to Majority Leader. House Speaker John Boehner faces a leadership challenge from his right (if that’s possible) from Rep. Louis Gohmert of Texas. Boehner will prevail, but it’s messy. House Republicans are still dealing with the scandal of their Majority Whip Steve Scalise’s cozying up to white supremacists in 2002. Scalise (of Louisiana) still has Boehner’s backing and the orangey Speaker will prevail. So, I guess House Republicans are OK with how their party smells right now. And what else is new?

Senator Cory Booker will be sworn in today, having won his re-election against Jeff Bell in November. And the House renews itself with every member of both parties, both incoming freshman like BWC and returning members; this will be the country’s 114th Congress.

I wish them each good luck today. Today, everything starts new.  

Labels

Democrat. Republican. Liberal. Conservative. Green, Libertarian, Tea Party.

These are labels that the mainstream media apply to politicians. Sometimes they are appropriate. But most of the time they fit like a pair of baggy pants on an anorexic supermodel.

Take our governor. What label fits Chris Christie? Certainly, he’s a Republican, isn’t he? He’s the outgoing chair of the Republican Governor’s Association, delivered a self-serving keynote speech at the 2012 Republican National Convention, and is a top-tier contender for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016.

But not all agree. At least by their definition of “Republican.”  

Why the Dems Lost Middle America and Might Never Win Again

Friends, this past election cycle was a devastating one for Democrats nation-wide. Really, we got trounced. Our butts were handed to us. The numbers speak for themselves. From the poor counties of rural Kansas to the stark plains of Texas, from the coal country communities of Kentucky to the streets of Harrisburg PA, we got crushed. So to my East and West coast Democrats who are wondering why – why people to whom it would seem opposition to Republicans and their policies would be a fundamental part of life, would possibly carry them to victory – you need to understand the new math in town. It’s been creeping up on us for a while, but now it’s arrived. It’s Energy – fossil fuel energy, to be precise.

For Boomers and Millennials here on the East Coast, we’ve been taught two overarching, nearly sacred ideas when it comes to Fossil Fuel energy. The first, and this has been ‘drilled’ in our brains since elementary school, is that we’re running out. We’re running out of Oil and Gas globally, nationally, and locally. The Second, of a more recent cast, is that Fossil Fuels are rapidly turning the Earth into a nearly uninhabitable, apocalyptic planet. Now here’s the interesting part: I’m not going to comment on the veracity of either assumption. That’s not what this short blog is about. It’s about how any Democrat worth his or her weight doesn’t stand a snail’s chance of winning any electoral race, from Senate to Dog Catcher, in any Midwestern state, Alaska or Texas if he/she strolls in and discusses carbon tax, carbon emission limitations, or declaring war on “Big Oil.”

America is a big country, and there is a new truth in the land. It’s a truth that is now as much of a factor in our economy as the automobile industry was in the 1950’s, or whale oil a century before that. America is on the cusp of becoming the world’s foremost producer and exporter of fossil fuels and related products. America is no longer some huge version of Industrial England. It’s becoming, economically speaking, a gigantic, colossal version of Saudi Arabia.

The Oil and Gas are not running out. No, to the contrary, they are bursting from our lands, being extracted by entirely new and arguably destructive technologies and methods. And this factor, coupled with the reality of a booming, energy-hungry South and East Asia, will potentially bring in an unprecedented amount of wealth to some of the poorest parts of our nation, an event not seen in over a century. The people of Bismarck, North Dakota and Louisville, Kentucky know this well. They see the changes in town. The new construction. The $20/hr wages at Walmart. They see jobs, jobs, jobs. And localities and counties see revenue, revenue, revenue.

Here in Depression-plagued New Jersey we don’t see these changes. We don’t venture into our nation’s interior much these days. We prefer to fly over it on our journeys west to California and beyond. But ignoring it won’t make it go away.

So, fellow Democrats and environmentalists, keep attending your public viewings of movies like “An Inconvenient Truth.” Keep watching your documentaries on how the Earth is slowly transforming into another version of the hothouse that is Venus. Continue to write your blogs that stipulate that if we continue to consume fossil fuels at the present rate, entire nations will find themselves submerged by the sea within the next few decades. You may be right; you probably are right. And that approach will win you accolades in our universities, it will win you new friends on the streets of Manhattan and San Francisco; it will win you standing ovations in the United Nations. But from now on, it won’t win you elections in most parts of the United States. No way.

Yes. Christie is our governor when traveling, but does he have the time to govern?

Today Gov. Christie will be in Lewiston, Maine campaigning for Gov. Paul LePage at three events. This evening he will join Mitt Romney in Boston to raise funds for the Ann Romney Center for Neurological Diseases.

My beef with his his excessive trips out-of-state is not that he cannot communicate with staff via e-mail and phone while away. He can and does. He remains the governor and can shoot off an e-mail or cell call when something urgent arises. In the midst of a hectic schedule whether he has enough time to understand, address and carefully answer the urgent matter might be questionable. In some cases he may just say “Wait until I get back.”

The larger problem is that there are pressing issues in our state which need much more than a rapid, short response, like jobs, the economy, pen/ben, transportation trust fund, cratering Atlantic County, and more. They require his undivided attention, real work, consulting with others, time devoted, and deliberations, not just kicking them down the road because he is down the road.

His travel requires time to prepare for each event (learning who are the local leaders and local issues), prepare/review speeches, transit in and out of helicopters, planes and cars, greet dignitaries, make speeches, mix with the crowd, sit through meals, and more. With three stops today in Maine and an evening in Boston, does anyone think he has much time to address the vexing problems affecting those he is supposed to represent? By traveling so much he does us a disservice.    

PolitickerNJ has No Bias At All

promoted by Rosi

Folks over at PolitickerNJ have regularly denied having a political bias, and they may not be aware of it.  However, often it is quite clear.  Here’s a wonderful example.

A Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind poll asked both Democrats and Republicans what they thought of potential Democratic and Republican wannabes for Governor:  

In Flemington tonight: School security plans leaked, Will there be more calls for resignation?

Tonight 7pm is the first meeting of the Flemington Borough Council since an explosive meeting – one week ago tonight – of the school board that serves the same town. We’ll know by tonight if there’s reverb from last week, and whether Republican members of the Borough Council, some of whom were leaked confidential info and apparently didn’t report it, have anything to say for themselves. Here’s what’s going on:

School security documents leaked: At last Monday’s Flemington-Raritan School Board meeting, we learned that Board member Alan Brewer (Flemington) sent details of the emergency security plan now being drafted for all the district schools to 10 Republicans active in Flemington politics. Board member Anna Fallon, who confirmed this leak via public records request, demanded Brewer’s resignation. Board member Robin Behn also demanded Brewer resign. And that was echoed during the meeting’s public comments, including from me. I am a Flemington resident and Brewer represents me on that Board.

Why is that a big deal? What Brewer leaked are plans that first responders need immediately in an emergency, like what hallway kids are told to run down to escape if there’s a shooter in the building, or where the hidden cameras are placed. Now that info has been leaked past the confidentiality of school officials. That plan was expensive and months in the making. But what is far worse is the risk to the safety of children and staff that Brewer might have caused.

Who did Al Brewer leak to: Erica Edwards (Flemington mayor), Brian Swingle, John Gorman, Phil Greiner and Phil Velella (the Republicans on Flemington Borough Council), Bill Reed (Republican Party municipal chair), Marcia Karrow (former state senator), Bob Hauck (former Flemington councilman), Mary Melfi (Hunterdon Clerk) and Elaine Gorman (Councilman Gorman’s wife, who represents her voting district to the Republican Party).

My question to the 10 Republican he leaked to: Why didn’t you immediately report this breach to the Board?