Report: Body found in Jerusalem forest

Israeli police have recovered a body in the same Jerusalem forest where Lakewood student Aaron Sofer went missing last week, according to a report in The Jerusalem Post.

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Morning Digest: August 28th

Morning Digest: August 28th

Ferguson 2014, Newark 1967: Could New Jersey's largest city see mass unrest again?

Ferguson 2014, Newark 1967: Could New Jersey's largest city see mass unrest again?

NEWARK - The images of exploding Molotov cocktails lighting up the brutal, after-dark duel between protesters and police in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri earlier this month served to spur memories of the days that ripped apart Newark's soul in 1967.

In Ferguson, after an unarmed 18-year-old African-American male was fatally shot by a white Ferguson police officer on August 9, the streets of the Saint Louis suburb erupted. After almost two weeks of furious demonstrations and the introduction of the National Guard, Ferguson has simmered down as federal investigations ensue.

In Newark, the July 1967 arrest of a Newark taxi driver by two white police officers opened up the gates of Hell. Six days of shooting, looting, death and destruction left 26 people dead, a situation many observers and historians say was made worse by the presence of the National Guard. Federal and state investigations tried to the get to the core of the problems that led to what some called a riot, others a rebellion. Meanwhile, Newark went into an economic and population tail spin from which it took decades to significantly recover.

One dark thread of discord unites Newark in 1967 and Ferguson in 2014 - the under-representation of minorities in the city government and police department. Seven members out of the nine-member Newark City Council were white when the 1967 civil disturbances began, and few of the faces on the police force were black, at the moment when the majority of the city's population had shifted in favor of African-Americans. 

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Chris Christie's Jekyll & Hyde complex

Chris Christie's Jekyll & Hyde complex

We all know the story: An amiable, even-keeled doctor, in an effort to separate the good from his darker impulses, concocts and consumes a secret potion that, momentarily, induces a metamorphosis of physical and mental being and turns him into a monstrous and unconscionable brute. Things go OK for a while, the doctor reveling in his cleverness and scientific acumen, but the experiment doesn't last: The doctor soon finds himself unable to control the brute within, changing over more frequently and for longer intervals, until one day he wakes up permanently transfigured and ultimately exacts his own demise.

It's not quite the same problem New Jersey's Gov. Chris Christie has, but the allegory that is The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde does provide some insight into the evolution of one of the biggest political personalities this side of the 2016 presidential primaries.

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Four North Jersey Democratic organizations come together in Lyndhurst

Four North Jersey Democratic organizations come together in Lyndhurst

They crowded into the San Carlo in Lyndhurst this afternoon, not just the chairs of the four northern Democratic counties, but their attendant lower legislative delegations, for what amounted to a show of political power.

This was Essex County Democratic Chairman Leroy Jones joining his counterparts from Passaic, Hudson, and Bergen counties and 18-19 assembly people, each of whom spoke about his or her most pressing issues.

Jones spoke to PolitickerNJ after the session.

“I’m enthused and encouraged and looking forward to a partnership that can bolster dividends for our region,” said the Essex chairman.

The laundry list of issues included Newark, the Meadowlands, the ports, education and a focus on small bus along main street corridors.

“I applaud them,” said Assemblyman Ralph Caputo (D-28), referring to the chairs who scheduled the meeting. “North Jersey has got to take care of their region on the bigger issues, and yes, gaming is one of them.”

Assemblyman Gary Schaer (D-36), chairman of the Assembly Budget Committee, also attended.

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Republican U.S. Senate candidate Bell releases first ad on the radio

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Bell releases first ad on the radio

Republican U.S. Senate nominee Jeff Bell today released his first ad - a radio ad highlighting his gold standard proposal.

Running on WCBS-FM and WOR-AM, the 30-second spot, "Ahead of His Time," alludes to Bell's political past as champion of across-the-board tax cuts.

A longshot conservative Republican, Bell is running against incumbent U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ).

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In Lakewood, the 'only feeling is prayer'

In Lakewood, the 'only feeling is prayer'

As the town of Lakewood waits for an update on the search for missing student Aaron Sofer, Committeeman Meir Lichtenstein, a former mayor, said the community continues to pray for a safe and happy resolution to the crisis.

“They are almost at a loss, as far as I know there are no leads,” said Lichtenstein. “They’ve gone researching the forest again.”

Sofer disappeared last Friday while hiking in the forest outside Jerusalem.

His parents are now in Israel to help with the search.

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WNY: Munoz says Menendez should stay clear of Roque

WNY: Munoz says Menendez should stay clear of Roque

Newly returned from vacation, lame duck Hudson County Freeholder Jose Munoz surveyed the waterfront from afar as a raft-load of Democratic Party establishment insiders feasted on high-end finger food in the company of incumbent Mayor Felix Roque.

Having lost the Democratic Primary to Commissioner Caridad Rodriguez in June amid rumors of self-resuscitation in time for the 2015 municipal race, Munoz won’t yet discuss his plans.

“At this point I’m considering what I’m going to do,” he said. “I talked to Count Wiley, who had done a tremendous job in West New York as a commissioner and kept Roque on his feet, but I haven’t made my decision yet.”

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The Back Room

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...

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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

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