Senate President Steve Sweeney, rumored to be eyeing a potential run for governor, was invited to attend this week's Democratic Governor's Association conference in Los Angeles, but turned down the request, according to a source close to Sweeney.
Sweeney begged off the event citing the need to stay in New Jersey to deal with issues here including the push for a minimum wage increase and Senate Budget Committee hearings on Sandy, the source said.
"He was honored but decided the issues here were more important," the source said.
State Sen. Barbara Buono, who also is a potential challenger to Gov. Chris Christie, is in L.A. now for the convention. Buono is so far the most vocal of the potential contenders and has already been in the field with a poll and six days ago posted a job advertisement for a campaign manager on democraticgain.org.
It's unknown if other potential challengers, including Newark Mayor Cory Booker, were invited to the event.
The support of the DGA could be crucial in the race as Christie is expected to command millions in outside funding.
After weeks of speculation, the direction of the Newark mayoral race may take an important turn today as prominent members of the Payne political family gather at Newark's Robert Treat Hotel at 11:30 a.m.
The campaign of Newark mayoral candidate Shavar Jeffries has called a press conference at which both U.S. Rep. Donald M. Payne, Jr. (D-10) and Essex County deputy chief of staff and former state Assemblyman William D. Payne will be present.Read More >
Days Since Last Christie Press Conference (Jan. 9)
By Suzanne M. Walters When unions representing local police and firefighters cannot agree to new contract terms with local governments, State law mandates that the parties submit to binding arbitration. A third-party referee, then, sets the... Read More >
"The governor has allowed political cronyism to continue and even flourish, rather than stamp it out, with some of his closest confidants enriching themselves through millions of dollars in state contracts, and legal and lobbying fees, an Asbury Park Press review of thousands of pages of campaign, lobbying and contracting documents found."- The Asbury Park Press
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