Sweeney: Dems need to decide soon on a Christie opponent, says he still is weighing possible run
By Matthew Arco | January 7th, 2013 - 2:18pm
| More

TRENTON – Senate President Steve Sweeney made two things clear Monday in regards to finding a Democratic challenger to Gov. Chris Christie in 2013: Democrats need to make a decision very soon, and Sweeney is still in the running.

Sweeney told reporters he is still weighing a bid for governor in the upcoming race but stopped short of giving a timeline of when an announcement from him or other Democrats would be rolled out.

“Look, no one by any means thinks this is going to be an easy race. It’s going to be a tough race. It’s always a tough race when you face an incumbent,” he said. “So, we want to make sure that we put the best candidate forward … [and] I’m one of those people we’re looking at.”

Sweeney admitted the clock is ticking on Democrats to converge around a single candidate.

“We’ll figure that out shortly,” he said, adding, “But it has to be figured out very shortly.”

Sweeney would not say who in the Democratic Party has expressed interest to run against Christie, and added that the party’s only declared candidate, state Sen. Barbara Buono, would make for a great candidate for Democrats.

“There’s nothing wrong with Barbara, honestly,” he responded after being asked by a reporter if there’s a reason Democrats have yet to rally behind the state senator.

“Honestly, nothing at all,” he said.

The top Senate Democrat spoke candidly during a news conference about the uphill battle his party will have in raising money for the 2013 election, citing the governor’s ability to raise campaign dollars.

“I think the governor will have a financial edge,” he said, later saying the governor has taken “advantage of his position to raise funds” for his re-election campaign.

“So, I expect him to have a lot of money,” Sweeny said. “But I also expect the Democratic candidate will be in a very good position also.”

Sweeney also described himself “as a numbers person,” explaining there are 700,000 more Democrats than Republicans in New Jersey and that the numbers will give a Democratic candidate the necessary edge to make the race competitive.

“That’s not bad for a Democrat to start with,” he said.

During the press conference, Sweeney made a hurricane reference that he quickly sought to pull back.

Sweeney told reporters the governor will hide behind super storm Sandy in an attempt to gloss over what Sweeney characterized as the governor’s failures in office.

In an attempt to reference the state’s high unemployment rate, the Senate president made an inadvertent reference to the hurricane, which he quickly retracted.

“We gave the governor a jobs package … [and] he vetoed it. And his job package was a hurricane. I guess he prayed a lot and got lucky a storm came,” said Sweeney, who immediately took back the comment.

“I shouldn’t say that,” he said. “I apologize for saying that.”

 

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: September 2nd

Campaign season now under way in Bergen County Politics is practiced year-round in Bergen County, and street-level campaigning has been going on quietly all summer. But both Republicans and Democrats say the Rutherford Street Fair on Labor Day signals a more intense phase of electioneering. (Ensslin/The Bergen Record) http://www.northjersey.com/news/campaign-season-now-under-way-in-bergen-county-1.1079080  ...

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

"Governor Christie ripped President Obama this summer for failing to carve out some time during a Texas fundraising swing to visit the Mexican border, where the unprecedented flood of immigrant children from Central America had reached a crisis point. ...Yet Christie is not squeezing in a tour of the troubled border during his own three-day trade and diplomatic mission to Mexico, which is set to begin on Wednesday. The governor is planning a series of meetings with Mexican officials, including President Enrique Peña Nieto and the finance and energy ministers." - columnist Charles Stile

- The Bergen Record

Poll

Governor Chris Christie's trip to Mexico...:

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