Republicans see opportunity in Gloucester, but must get past leadership fight first

Normally, state Republicans probably wouldn’t worry about a leadership spat in Gloucester County, where the local GOP hasn’t exactly been relevant in recent years.
But with a political climate that Republicans think makes two of the county’s Democrat-controlled legislative districts competitive, Republicans hope that opportunity isn’t squandered by a squabble.

Republican State Chairman Tom Wilson has stepped in to try to mediate the split between Gloucester County Republican Chairwoman Loran Oglesby and a group of party activists, while the campaign of gubernatorial frontrunner Chris Christie has yet to commit to screen in Gloucester County Oglesby names the members of her party’s screening committee.

The problem stems from an ongoing fight between Oglesby and a group of detractors led by former freeholder candidate Phyllis Scapellato and Franklin Township Municipal Chairman Bill Fey, who hopes to unseat Oglesby in June.  Despite her critics’ best efforts to convince Oglesby to step down before picking the party’s candidates, she has already begun the process.

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Corzine: 'I am glad this is all over'

Governor Corzine today expressed relief that the question of whether he will be forced to reveal his email correspondence with ex-girlfriend/former union leader Carla Katz has been resolved by the State Supreme Court’s refusal to hear Republican State Chairman Tom Wilson’s case.

“I am glad this is all over. I think we had a political fishing trip by folks that has gone on far too long.  I think that the things that we are working on here today, things of real substance, are what public life is supposed to be all about,” said Corzine in a statement.

Wilson argued that the emails should be aired so the public can judge whether Corzine and Katz engaged in back-channel negotiations during contract talks with Katz’s former union, CWA Local 1034.  

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Fulop hits Healy for campaign use of city vehicle

Jersey City Councilman Steve Fulop lashed out at Mayor Jerramiah Healy today for using city vehicles as campaign props.

Fulop, who is running for reelection to his Ward E council seat, said that the Healy camp draped a rented incinerator authority truck with campaign banners during the local St. Patrick’s Day parade.  While technically legal, Fulop doubted that city vehicles would be made available for anyone else to rent for campaign purposes.  

“While it has been clarified that this is a long practice in Jersey City and the Mayor’s campaign acted within city policy set years ago, the renting of city vehicles in the future needs to stop immediately. Renting of city property is not only in bad taste but it sets a bad precedent” Fulop said in a statement. “Can anyone rent city vehicles to use for advertising or for fun? Would the Mayor support any and all candidates running for any office the opportunity to rent city vehicles for campaign purposes?”

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Wilson says now that Corzine has made his point, he should turn over Katz emails

With no legal options remaining to force Governor Corzine to turn over emails between himself and ex-girlfriend Carla Katz, a former public employee union leader, Republican State Chairman Tom Wilson said today Corzine should release the emails on his own volition.  

“With the legal question now answered, all that is left is for Jon Corzine to answer the real question. Did his backchannel communications with Carla Katz, away from the bargaining table, influence his actions on the state worker contract?  The only way for people to know the answer is for Corzine to now release the e-mails,” wrote Wilson in his formal response to the State Supreme Court’s decision not to hear his legal challenge to Corzine today.

Corzine claimed executive privilege in keeping the emails out of view and said last year that the public would find most of the content “extraordinarily boring.”

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Report: Top court won't hear Corzine e-mail case

The Associated Press is reporting that the New Jersey Supreme Court has decided against hearing a case seeking the release of Gov. Jon Corzine's e-mails with his former girlfriend, labor leader Carla Katz.  The case had been filed by Tom Wilson, the Republican State Chairman.

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Yudin keeps Lonegan on BCRO convention ballot

Yudin keeps Lonegan on BCRO convention ballot
BCRO Chair Bob Yudin

Gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan’s campaign yesterday asked Bergen County Republican Chairman Bob Yudin to take Lonegan’s name off the ballot for tomorrow night’s convention in his home county. 

Today, Yudin refused.

“To now, just 48 hours before the convention, ask to have his name removed, I don’t feel is proper and therefore we will move on with the convention,” said Yudin. “First it denies the Lonegan rank and file an opportunity to vote for their man. Second of all we have a process in place.” 

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Pennacchio weighs in on Lehman lawsuit

In response to the state’s lawsuit against former Lehman Brothers executives and directors over $118 million in pension fund losses, State Sen. Joe Pennacchio (R-Montville) said that the legal action was “long overdue” but not enough.

Pennacchio would like to hold legislative hearings on state investment decisions.  

"This lawsuit doesn't provide the answers that taxpayers and retirees need to be certain that the state is competently managing the billions of dollars of hard earned money that is being placed in its care,” Pennacchio said yesterday in a press release. “I again call for immediate legislative hearings to determine whether the procedures governing state investment decisions are sound.”

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Morning News Digest: March 18, 2009

The Back Room

Christie invades South Carolina

On his first visit to South Carolina as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, Gov. Chris Christie stayed in "moderate Charleston, in contrast to other potential GOP candidates who made early visits to conservatives elsewhere," according to an ABC News report.

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: September 17th

U.S. Senate race: Bell defends gold standard stance MONTCLAIR - On the same day he was politically brickbatted by the chief adviser to the last Republican challenger to incumbent U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), GOP Senate candidate Jeff Bell stood by a key plank of policy platform: monetary reform...

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Op-Ed

Legislation needed for publicly financed gubernatorial elections

By JEFF BRINDLE It is critical that the Legislature soon enact a pending bill that would ensure the state’s Gubernatorial Public Financing Program is available in the event of a special election for governor.  Not only is there no current legal... Read More >

Contributors

(9-17-14) Viral Video Prompts Questionable NJ Municipal Ordinance -  Socrates said, “While I might disagree with what you say, I will defend to the death your right to say... more »
The Correct Foreign Policy – Neither Fortress America Nor Pax Americana      Last week marked the 75th anniversary of the beginning of World War 2.  It started with the... 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

“Clearly there’s some resemblance with Theodore Roosevelt. That direct confrontational style of leadership.” - historian Doris Hearns Goodwin, referring to Gov. Chris Christie.

- The Times of Trenton

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