Tag Archive: Tom Corbett

Economic and Fiscal Failures: Christie & Corbett by the Numbers

I like when advocacy pieces come to us sourced and linked, like this from an email that came to us via DNC. Much of Gov. Christie’s time spent galavanting around the country trying to rehabilitate his scandal-plagued street cred has ironically been a tour of states doing better than New Jersey is. But today, Christie is in Pennsylvania, where Gov. Tom Corbett’s economic policies have left his state hurting, just like Christie’s have. You’d think with 5 embarrassing credit downgrades in his record, Corbett would avoid even getting photographed with Christie, who has a record 8. But Corbett’s desperate and tanking in the polls – down 17 points against Dem challenger Tom Wolf – so I guess his handlers told him the Christie road show was worth bringing to town even if it upstages him. After all, these days Christie’s RGA seems to be the only thing propping up Corbett’s campaign; RGA’s actually Corbett’s biggest donor. Way to light up the grassroots there, Tom.

Tonight, Hillary Clinton’s in the Philly area, too, headlining a Women for Wolf funder. Both Clinton and Christie will need southeast PA voters come November 2016, if either of them gets that far. We’ll see in less than a month which one can claim their PAGov visiting star power helped swing an election.

Meanwhile, here’s DNC’s take on why it shouldn’t be Christie:

Job Growth

47th – Since Corbett took office in January 2011, Pennsylvania has ranked 47th in job creation. [Keystone Research Center, 10/7/14]

42nd – In that same time period, New Jersey ranked 42nd in job creation. [Keystone Research Center, 10/7/14]

Huge Corporate Tax Breaks

$3.9 billion – In Pennsylvania, Corbett gives away over $3.9 billion a year in corporate tax breaks. [Washington Post 01/30/14]

$4 billion – Under Christie, New Jersey has given away over $4 billion in corporate tax breaks and grants. [Bloomberg, 6/11/14]

Below, their massive shortfalls, downgrades & regional worsts.  

Do The Booker Backwalk!

Have you heard about the new dance craze sweeping the nation? It’s called the Cory Booker Backwalk, and it goes something like this:

1) Put your foot in your mouth. Do this by calling “nauseating” and “ridiculous” the completely legitimate questions being asked by the Obama campaign about Mitt Romney’s record at Bain Capital. Bain is a cornerstone of Romney’s message, so what makes the topic unsavory isn’t exactly clear. Maybe, like Steve Kornacki points out, Booker just doesn’t want to anger his many friends (and potential future friends, wink wink) in the finance sector.

2) Take your foot out of your mouth. Do this by frantically publishing a YouTube video intended to squish any notion that Booker would say such a silly thing. Call it a clarification, even if it’s essentially a complete reversal.

Got it? Good, because the Booker Backwalk is all over the news today, and you don’t want to miss out. His pals at Morning Joe think it’s no big deal and are holding out hope for another video of Booker and Christie running hand-in-hand through a meadow.  At CNN they have reported that Booker is “Backtracking Bigtime.” And Talking Points Memo is focusing more on how Booker’s gaffe/possible moment of too much candidness gives Republicans new ammo no matter how you slice it.

It’s interesting that coverage of this debacle casts Booker as a progressive Democrat. Think Progress, for example, calls Booker the “popular and progressive” mayor of Newark, even though Booker’s take on one of  the biggest issues of the day – education reform – is in square alignment with Republican governors like Chris Christie, Bobby Jindal, Mitch Daniels and Tom Corbett. Journalist Glen Ford has reported on Booker’s direct ties to the right’s agenda of privatization and union-busting. Just two weeks ago, Booker spoke at a pro-school voucher event sponsored by ALEC. Progressive?

Glen Ford doesn’t think so. In fact, Ford calls Booker “a major player in a huge historical saga in which the corporate right successfully bought its way deep into Black American politics.” That saga, argues Ford, is at the root of the current attack on public education in NJ and across the U.S. Watch and think:

The Difference Between Democrats and Republicans

Cross-posted from deciminyan.org

One of the signature accomplishments of the still-young session of the New Jersey legislative session has been the passage of a bill to ensure equal rights for married couples. State Senate President Stephen Sweeney and General Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver assigned the bill number as S-1 and A-1, respectively, to emphasize the significance of this historic measure.

Yet, one of the main objections from the Republicans during the debate was that very fact. They whined that with the higher-than-average unemployment rate under the Christie administration, the legislature should not have been “wasting” its time on marriage equality, but instead should have put “jobs” (their shorthand for tax breaks for millionaires) at the top of the agenda.

Contrast this action in the Garden State’s Democratically-controlled legislature to that of a Republican-controlled legislature across the river in Pennsylvania. What do you think is receiving priority treatment there? It’s a GOP-sponsored voter-suppression bill that has the support of their Tea Party fellow traveler Governor Tom Corbett. Despite the fact that there is absolutely no evidence of wholesale voter fraud, the GOP is working to deny the vote to those classes of people who don’t have proper photo ID (and typically vote Democratic). This legislation is being fast-tracked to be in place in time to influence the 2012 presidential election. So I guess, by GOP logic, voter suppression is more important than creating jobs in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania GOP will pass legislation that will inevitably embroil the state in expensive lawsuits while the New Jersey Democrats will continue to work to ensure equal rights.

I often disagree with politicians from both parties, but this example shows the fundamental difference between Democrats and Republicans. Ensuring rights vs. suppressing rights.

Update: According to Jane Roh, the Pennsylvania House is also taking up a bill to name an official state firearm. Another important job-creating issue.

NJ Dem’s Marketing Fail

Markos Moulitsas (“Kos”) posted a diary today entitled “Barack Obama’s marketing fail.”  It points out how some of the mainstream media are twisting the results of the recent Deficit Commission announcement to pin the blame on the president for proposed cuts to social programs.

New Jersey Democrats are also failing at the marketing of their message to the mainstream media.  Case in point: today’s Philadelphia Inquirer article on how Pennsylvania governor-elect Tom Corbett hopes to emulate Chris Christie.

The Inquirer is one of the more politically balanced newspapers around.  Its editorial page is slightly left-of-center, but it has carried far right columnists like Rick Santorum.

In its reporting on what our governor has done with the budget deficit, the Inquirer states:

Because Christie plugged that budget hole without raising taxes, he raised enough eyes round the country to catapult him from Jersey pol to national figure.  (emphasis mine)

In discussions with several of my friends, it is clear that this is the common wisdom – Christie has cut taxes.  Democrats have to do better in debunking this falsehood.  According to the Home News Tribune, when you take into account the deferral of the homestead rebate, this year’s property tax bill will average out to a 23.5 percent increase.  And of course, other taxes and fees such as the NJ Transit fare increase are rising faster than inflation.

It’s ironic that Barack Obama, who lowered taxes on the middle class, is getting a bum rap from the mainstream media, while Chris Christie, who tells seemingly credible lies, is getting the royal treatment.

Smashing the State-of New Jersey

The view of Chris Christie & NJ from from Dissent Magazine cross-posted by the author. – promoted by Rosi

ON APRIL 27, thousands of students walked out of New Jersey schools. Holding signs that read “Stop Education Cuts” and “Dream Killers,” they were out to protest Republican Governor Chris Christie’s proposal to sharply cut education spending. An eighteen-year-old recent graduate organized the walkout on Facebook; the event she posted had 18,082 confirmed guests and 15,021 “maybe attending.” A lot of people showed up.

Christie was elected on a no-new-taxes, get-tough-on-public-employees platform, so the policies he has implemented since taking office in January should come as no surprise. But will voters like Republican political rhetoric as much once they’ve experienced it as policy that affects their lives?

New Jersey is a laboratory for politics in the age of Obama and the Tea Party. After nearly two years of Republican obstructionism in Congress, Christie is saying “yes” to a vast patchwork of service and tax cuts. In doing so, he is putting Republican policy into practice and on display-GOP governance is no longer hypothetical in Great Recession America. And just as our last painful national experience in Republican rule demonstrated, talking tough on taxes is often merely a cover for redistributing wealth upward, to the wealthy. While Christie makes noises about “shared sacrifice,” localities hit by budget cuts will be forced to further raise property taxes, and public transit fares are going up an unprecedented 25 percent-a “turnstile tax” that will fall largely on the working and middle classes.