Tag Archive: DGA

Here’s how the DNC is dogging White House wannabe Chris Christie today

If you’re like me, you wondered where the living hell the DNC (and the DGA) were 2 years ago when they were all Barbara Buono’s got cooties hands-off during Chris Christie’s re-election campaign. Dems asleep at the switch is a huge reason Christie was allowed to become the wrecking ball he is today. But I guess it was a little challenging for the national Dems to pile in when so many of the state Dems were quietly undermining the Democratic nominee for governor as they fed off Christie’s reflected glory while he still had some. Precious moments some Dems prefer you forget (oh hai Steve Sweeney).

But that was then and this is now. And I just want to point you to something that’s probably already sitting in your Inbox – a near-perfect email from DNC Research Director Laura Dillon (follow her on Twitter).

Why do I like this so much? Two reasons: (1) Email itself is short & punchy (but nicely linky) and (2) The last link takes you to a sweet outline of who Christie really is that just happens to be the perfect thing you can send to the yammering winger who’s bothering you on Facebook or your undecided uncle in whatever early-primary state.

Some people won’t click that last link, so I’m going to just shut up now and send you there right now. Share the hell out of it.

And hey – Does this Vine get you fired up for Tuesday?

Overdue New Year’s Resolutions

I’ve made a number of New Year’s resolutions this year – and like birthday wishes, I prefer to keep them to myself. But, I can safely reveal one of them: I’ve resolved to write more on Blue Jersey.

And just in time, really, to comment on someone else’s New Year’s resolution – that of the Democratic Governor’s Association, which sent an email this morning proclaiming:

I wanted to let you in on our resolution for the New Year: it’s to win back governors’ mansions across the country for Democrats.

No more union-bashers like Scott Walker. No more gay-bashers like Tom Corbett. No more Tea Party heroes like Rick Scott.

Here’s the good news: thanks to generous supporters like you, we were able to meet and surpass our year-end $90,000 fundraising goal, putting us in great shape to win in 2014.

Now we’re going to roll up our sleeves and get to work.

The message was followed by the obligatory ask to like the DGA’s Facebook page, and to contribute to help with this mission.

And a fine mission it is, of course. But, as one of my wisest friends said on reading this, “What a shocking New Year’s resolution for the DGA to make. Too bad they didn’t make it last New Year’s Eve.”

This 2014 resolution might have said, “no more free passes, like we gave Chris Christie last year.” Never again will the DGA stand on the sidelines of a Democratic challenger’s race against a Republican incumbent with aspirations of higher office! – or some such thing.

It might have said that. But, as The Daily Beast’s David Freedlander pointed out yesterday, that wouldn’t quite be true.

And what good is a resolution, if you don’t really plan to keep it.

Here’s Why I Never Donate to National Groups like DGA

promoted by Rosi

Because they rarely, if ever, bother to get involved in New Jersey races.  They love to treat NJ Democrats like ATMs, but when we are in need — including desperate need — they talk a lot about us but rarely if ever step up to the plate when we need them.  And sometimes they are actually damaging.

But the DGA head (Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin) would not say whether his organization would provide support in the way of television ads. “I’ve been working closely with Barbara, because we want to win. We’re not gonna start spending big money until we see evidence that we’re gonna win. And so we’re continuing to assess that.”

“Working closely with” appears to mean, “Getting on the phone every once in a while and then publicly admitting in a media interview that we think she has no shot.”

This is why I have a rule on political donations: give to candidates, not organizations.

Swarm this poll: Who needs a fundraising email from Gov. Martin O’Malley? We do.

I’m going to suggest you take a sec and tell Gov. Martin O’Malley to send a fundraising email for Barbara Buono. Read on. Or just do it now.

For a while I kept a count of how many emails I got from the DGA – the Democratic Governors Association – about GOP Virginia Gov candidate Ken Cuccinelli, who never met a uterus he didn’t think he could order around vs. emails about Chris Christie, whose crazy is considerably better harnessed. And far more dangerous, given that it’s Christie and not Cucinnelli who wants the White House and has people ready to write the fat checks to propel him there.

I gave up keeping count, and being annoyed that my emails to DGA went unanswered. I have enough stress. But now, here’s a thing. Now, they’re asking. Well, Gov. Martin O’Malley is. O’Malley, the hotshot Maryland governor who was sharply critical of Christie when he was DGA chair (he’s now Finance Chair) is circulating a poll asking which of 3 Gov races he should shoot out a fundraising email for.

The choices?

Virginia – for Terry McAuliffe, running against the aforementioned Cuccinelli, whose detractors call him “The Cooch” and he totally deserves that. Compares a woman’s right to choose to slavery, hates immigration reform, and didn’t want to sign a letter asking Congress to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act.

Maryland – O’Malley’s home state, where his LG Anthony Brown is looking to follow in O’Malley’s top-grade shoes.

And New Jersey, where Barbara Buono is running against Chris Christie. I know I don’t have to make the case to you why O’Malley’s fundraiser email should be for Buono. Screw Virginia. Screw Maryland. Not really.

Just Vote for New Jersey.

It’s a Good Day to Endorse Barbara Buono

And that must be why everybody’s doing it. Right? Right?

Yesterday was the watershed day for Barbara Buono’s march toward the Democratic nomination for Governor, with Frank Pallone lending his very public support and NJ Senate President Steve Sweeney taking himself out of consideration on the same day. Yesterday also brought the endorsement of Rep. Bill Pascrell, who had been considering running for the nomination himself. Pascrell was the last shoe to fall as a succession of Democrats – Cory Booker, Dick Codey, and Sweeney – took themselves out of the running and the narrative of Anybody But Buono gave way to Buono’s own narrative, one of forward-leaning, progressive change for New Jersey.

It wasn’t an easy month in New Jersey Democratic politics. We should make the next part considerably more fun.

Today, the endorsements came (so far) in 3 big chunks:

1. South Jersey Dems: Includes both SJ electeds in leadership, Senate President Sweeney and Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald, the entire  SJ Democratic state  legislative delegation and all seven Democratic  county  party chairs. Their statement of support comes after unelected strongman George Norcross’ ‘non-endorsement endorsement’ of Buono, from a long list of people who agree with Buono on some things and have voted differently than she did on others.

Read the South Jersey Democrats’ ‘Open Letter’ here.

2. Dick Codey: Codey’s statement discusses Buono’s history as a progressive leader, including economic issues, health care policy, investment in public education, and gun control and spotlights her history as NJ’s first ever woman to become Senate Majority Leader.

Read Codey’s statement here.

3. Democratic Governors Assn. (DGA) Chair Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin: In December, Buono, the only Democrat in the race for Governor, traveled to Los Angeles for the annual conference of the DGA. Shumlin’s statement focused on Christie’s failings, particularly what we in New Jersey understand as his much-advertised but undelivered ‘Jersey Comeback’.

Read Gov. Peter Shumlin’s statement here.

DGA Chair Gov. Peter Shumlin Endorsement of Barbara Buono

Gov. Peter Shumlin of Vermont is Chair of the Democratic Governors Association (DGA). He made this statement today:

Barbara Buono understands the challenges facing New Jersey’s middle-class families because she’s lived through them. That’s why she’s spent her entire career fighting to create jobs, improve education, expand access to quality health care, and balance budgets. Unfortunately, Governor Christie has failed to deliver on his promise to turn the state around. He’s blown a hole in the budget while New Jersey ranks near the bottom of the nation in unemployment, foreclosures, property taxes, and business climate. New Jersey needs a governor focused on creating jobs and expanding opportunity for New Jersey’s working families and that’s exactly the kind of governor Barbara Buono will be.


That’s “Big” Money?

This is what the local press gets excited about these days:

Democratic governors are breaking in a new SuperPAC by attacking one of their most prominent Republican colleagues, Gov. Chris Christie.

DGA Action, a group run by the Democratic Governors Association that can raise and spend unlimited amounts of money, is running ads on the Internet needling Christie. And it doesn’t plan to stop the campaign it began in April anytime soon.

So far the organization has spent $1,000 in media markets “in and around New Jersey,” according to a spokeswoman for the organization – a pittance compared with the millions of dollars spent by an advocacy group on behalf of Christie.

$1000!?! OMG!!! Will the torrent of special interest money never cease?!!

Of course, we know who’s to blame:

A Christie spokesman, Michael Drewniak, called the ad campaign “ridiculous” and noted that DGA Action’s biggest donors are national teacher unions – longtime opponents of a governor who has curbed union benefits in an effort to dig New Jersey’s finances out of the hole.

Records from the Federal Election Commission show that the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers each gave DGA Action $250,000 in May, the largest contributions on record.

Damn those teachers and their $1000 on-line ad campaigns! What will we tell the children?

Of course, direct spending on the 2009 governor’s race topped $52 million. A pro-Christie PAC, the Committee For Our Children’s Future (these guys really have no shame, do they?), has already spent millions this year putting out ads FactCheck.org calls “misleading.” And that’s separate from the Reform Jersey Now slush fund Christie supporters used early in his term.

But yes, by all means, let’s get to the bottom of that $1000 on-line ad campaign!

As Dr. Evil learned, sometimes a little perspective is required:

DGA plays the Christie card

DGA logoAnd who can blame them?

Democratic Governors Association sent out an fundraising email web ad today designed to tap into outrage at the distance between Chris Christie’s position on marriage equality and where the Jersey constituency stands:

Stop Governor Christie’s Attack on Marriage Equality!

Despite overwhelming support for marriage equality, Republican Governor Chris Christie has vetoed the bill that would legalize gay marriage in New Jersey.

It’s outrageous! Governor Christie rejected a clear victory for equal rights in order to promote a divisive social agenda and score political points with the national conservative base.

Show Governor Christie that New Jerseyans support equal rights for all couples.

It asks you to add your name & email, then directs you to a page to donate. Go ahead and do whatever part of that floats your boat. The DGA will come in handy in next year’s election, and Christie is the big pulsating blob at the right of the radar screen already. Marriage equality issue is pretty clearly supported by New Jersey’s people.

Of course, unremarked upon by DGA is the fact that though Chris Christie has been consistent in his lack of support, and threw up a referendum roadblock, the issue also may figure between Democrats now warily eyeing each as they stare down the 2013 gubernatorial primary. Buono, Booker, and Codey for example have good records. Sweeney? More complicated. His disgraceful 2010 abstention is still on record. But … so is his reversal 2 years later. Yes, it was widely seen as political expediency (like that’s new in the world) to win back disaffected (and pissed) progressives with zero risk of actual change under a governor everybody knew wasn’t going to sign it anyway. But it’s also true he took a strong position of support and his movement signaled broader Democratic support (for what they should have been supporting all along). And that’s on record too.

2013. Can’t wait.  

Christie critic and DGA Chair Gov. Martin O’Malley at Dems’ Jefferson-Jackson Dinner

A few days ago, the Heldrich Hotel in New Brunswick was a tense and sweaty scene, with Democrats and Republicans hunkered down with a soon-to-be unhappy Governor Chris Christie. What a difference a few days make. Tonight, the Heldrich is overrun with jubilant Democrats in a feisty mood. Every time DSC Chair Asm John Wisniewski says the word “map” the room goes wild. This is the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner, a funder for the Dems, and a chance to ramp up for the coming fight for the State House in November. Guest of honor is Democratic Governors Association (DGA) Chair Gov. Martin O’Malley, very public critic on the national stage of what Gov. Christie is doing to New Jersey to propel himself to the national stage. Here are O’Malley’s remarks, prepared for delivery. He’s speaking now.

Chairman Wisniewski, Senate President Sweeney, Speaker Oliver, Governor Florio, proud Democrats from the Delaware to the Hudson…

As we begin,… a special word of thanks to Mayor Mark Smith and all the mayors who are with us.  I loved being a Mayor;  it’s a great job because you manage for results on the front lines of the big challenges that impact our quality of life.  There is no Democratic or Republican way of filling a pothole or more efficiently collecting the garbage. Mayors see problems and they bring people together to tackle these problems, and get things done.

I bring you greetings from your friends in Maryland.  If you think about it, we actually have a lot in common, don’t we?

o       You’re the home of Frank Sinatra,… We’re the birthplace of Billie Holiday;

o       You’re the home of the New Jersey Devils,… we’re the vacation home of former Vice President Dick Cheney;

o       We house much of the federal government – and nationally nobody seems to care,… you house the Giants and Jets,… and nationally nobody seems to notice;

o       In Maryland, we threw out a mean-spirited, ineffective, Republican governor after just one term,…

And in New Jersey,… Well, let’s just say it’s good to know we have so much in common.

Forward, Not Back

It’s great to join you here, because you know that to move forward we need to balance budgets, make tough choices, and invest in our future – all at the same time.  And you believe (as do I) that for our country to win the future, every state has to make tough decisions to move themselves forward.

For all their bombast and bluster, there is a group of ideological, narrow-minded, short-sighted, throwback, tea-partying Republican governors, who are not making the tough decisions or the right decisions necessary to create jobs, expand opportunity, and invest in our future.

The rest of O’Malley’s speech is after the jump.


Jefferson-Jackson Dinner: Martin O’Malley’s incursion into Christie territory

POLITICO says the Eastern Seaboard is not big enough for the both of them. And now Martin O’Malley, Governor of librul Maryland and one of Christie’s most pointed critics, is coming to Christie country. O’Malley’s the guest of honor at NJDSC’s Jefferson-Jackson Dinner April 6 in New Brunswick.

O’Malley decries Christie’s abusive treatment of public workers, thinks he’s a shortsighted, budget-slashing union buster. Calls Christie a hypocrite over his tough budget talk for skipping a $3 billion payment into the state’s pension fund and allowing New Jersey property taxes to increase. O’Malley sees Christie’s attention-grabbing antics as the stuff of a comedian whose theatrical efforts to poach business from Illinois don’t add value to the economy and do nothing to bring people together or solve problems. Christie says O’Malley spews pablum. But I think he knows some of the crass hypocrisy O’Malley calls him on is starting to be noticed by the press and ordinary New Jerseyans, as some of Christie’s “magic” wears off and people see past his brash.

This is a collision course that could be instructive. The Democrats have their eye on O’Malley for the White House some day. The Republicans want Christie for the White House, sooner than he plans (watch him demur on cue, like a shy wallflower showing a little leg).

Jefferson-Jackson Dinner, a fundraiser for the state Dems, is April 6 in New Brunswick.