Sweeney rips gov over Rutgers appointment
Credit: Tim Larsen Photo, Governor's Office
Senate President Steve Sweeney and Gov. Chris Christie in August during the higher education reorganization bill signing.
By Darryl R. Isherwood | December 19th, 2012 - 6:21pm
| More

Senate President Steve Sweeney today tore into Gov. Chris Christie over the governor's appointment of Martin Perez to the Rutgers Board of Governors.

In making the appointment, Christie sidestepped the Senate, which had been holding up Perez's nomination to the board. Perez, a New Brunswick attorney and president of the Latino Leadership Alliance of New Jersey, was originally nominated to the position by the governor 18 months ago.  Christie was able to appoint Perez under authority granted under the recent higher education restructuring bill, which created two additional governor's appointments to the board.

“The Senate Democrats have decided to play politics with nearly every important nomination I’ve tried to make over the past three years,” Christie said Wednesday in announcing Perez's appointment.

In a statement, Sweeney accused the governor of breaking the law and of pandering to the Hispanic community.

"The governor has shown a reckless disregard for the law, the Rutgers Board of Governors and the people of the state of New Jersey. The legislation clearly states the additional appointments to the board need to be from Camden and Essex counties. The action he announced today is in direct violation of the law," Sweeney said.

Sweeney took aim at Christie's treatment of Hispanics, alleging the governor has harmed Latinos at every turn.

"This is a governor who every year has done more and more to hurt Latinos, as reflected in many of his actions from budget cuts, including vetoing millions of dollars for the Center for Hispanic Policy, Research and Development, to opposing tying the CPI to minimum wage or failing to make appointments that reflect the state's diversity. He has made five nominations to the Supreme Court, none of which represent the largest minority group in New Jersey, despite numerous highly qualified candidates."

During last year's statewide redistricting process, Perez was a vocal proponent of the map presented by the Republican committee.  Perez agreed with the GOP assessment that the map would create more opportunities for Hispanic candidates.

But Democrats panned the map as an attempt at "packing" or putting as many Latinos as possible into one district to dilute their influence.

"Leading statewide Hispanic organizations directly denounced Mr. Perez for his redistricting map proposal, which would have packed minorities into districts, resulting in their underrepresentation in government and apparently this is his reward. The governor's attempt to curry favor with Latinos through backroom deal-making is wrong and his inability to name qualified candidates to critical positions is absurd in a state as diverse as New Jersey."

A spokesman for the governor did not immediately return an email seeking comment.

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: August 29th

Belmar mayor's race: a wave of post-Sandy project politics stirs up seaside Monmouth borough BELMAR - When Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty rolled out his re-election campaign in February, he did so still basking in the glow of what many residents of the 6,000-person Monmouth County seaside borough saw...

Op-Ed

White House’s Tuition Challenge Being Met in NJ

By MICHAEL W. KLEIN In his weekly radio address on August 16, President Obama challenged colleges “to do their part to bring down costs” and lighten the tuition burden on students.  The state colleges and universities in New Jersey have... Read More >

Contributors

My Republican Hillary Clinton Experience    There is a veritable plethora of reportage in print, internet, television and radio media speculating as to whether Hillary Clinton will seek the Democratic... more »
(8-27-14) All Americans Should Support Gov. Perry - Political prosecutions have no place in American life. Those who use the justice system as they are using it in Texas... more »
(Asbury Park, NJ) -- There's a word for someone who says one thing and does another: hypocrite.  There's no shortage of 'em in Trenton -- from ... more »
 The following letter was sent today to Republican state legislators, county chairs, state committee members, and New Hampshire... more »

Quote of the Day

quote of the day

"Christie’s method for coping with scandal has been more complicated. In January, the seemingly-local issue of lane closings on the George Washington Bridge, which created a massive traffic jam in the Hudson River town of Fort Lee, became one of national interest when it was revealed that one of Christie’s closest staffers had ordered them—for what looked like political retribution against a Democratic mayor. The scandal was quickly dubbed 'Bridgegate,' and unfortunately for Christie, it played into his reputation as a bully. Christie's response was to act unlike himself: humble." - Olivia Nuzzi

- The Daily Beast

Poll

Who is a better field general for his party as both try to win governor's races around the country?:

Blogroll

Visit the PolitickerNJ.com/resources page for links to the best collection of information on New Jersey state government.

 

  • Polls
  • The best blogs
  • Columnists
  • State election results
  • Assembly election results
  • Local party websites
  • And more.

PolitickerNJ.com/resources