Report: two Bergenfield councilmembers indicted

The Record is reporting that a state grand jury today indicted Bergenfield Council members Elaine Rabbitt and Dennis Mulligan for forging the signatures of two other members of the borough’s Democratic committee. 

Mulligan allegedly forged Mayor Timothy Driscoll’s signature on a letter offering Driscoll’s resignation from the municipal party committee, while Rabbitt allegedly forged Marie Gillman’s signature on a letter declaring Gillman’sresignation from the same committee, according to the state attorney general’s office. 

The fourth-degree charges carry a maximum penalty of 18 months in state prison and a $10,000 fine. 

Rabbitt and Mulligan offered no comment to the newspaper, while their lawyers, Ed Cillick and Albert Carilli, respectively, maintained their clients’ innocence.

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McNerney will seek reelection in 2010

McNerney will seek reelection in 2010

The shakeup of the Bergen County Democratic Organization has already led to speculation about who will run for county executive in 2010. 

Many insiders believe that if indicted Democratic Chairman Joe Ferriero goes --  as the party’s executive committee has called on him to do by January 15 barring total exoneration - then incumbent executive Dennis McNerney is on his way out too.

But McNerney, who’s held the seat since 2002, told PolitickerNJ this week that he definitely intends to seek a third term. 

“I’m definitely running.  There’s never been a doubt,” he said.  “I love what I do. That’s capital L.O.V.E.  It’s a great county and I love serving the people of Bergen County.” 

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FBI investigates envelope of 'powdery substance' at Senate Majority Office

TRENTON –Law enforcement officials are investigating a powdery substance in an envelope that arrived today at the Senate Majority Office and for a short time emptied the work area.

The envelope was addressed to “Gov. Codey,” according to Lieutenant Gerald Lewis of the New Jersey State Police Department.

“We received a call at  12:15 p.m.,” said Lewis.

Police evacuated the offices and a hazmat crew seized the envelope containing the suspicious substance.  Former governor Senate President Richard Codey (D-Essex) was in his district office this afternoon.

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Al Steele to be sentenced on Monday

Former Assemblyman Al Steele, who pleaded guilty last year to taking $15,500 in bribes, will be sentenced on Monday.

Judge Anne E. Thompson is scheduled to sentence Steele at 10a.m. at the Clarkson S. Fisher Federal Courthouse in Trenton.

Steele, a reverend who was also the Passaic County undersheriff, was arrested on September 6, 2007 with 10 other public officials in a sting dubbed “operation bid rig.”  He pleaded guilty to taking bribes to steer public contracts to an insurance company that turned out to be an undercover shell company set up by the FBI. 

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Donovan keeps Lieutenant Governor options open

Bergen County Clerk Kathe Donovan, who just won her fifth five year term as county clerk last month, does not rule out the possibility of becoming a candidate for Lieutenant Governor next year. 

But she’s not running for it.

“First of all you don’t run for it. The way I understand the law is people select you after the primary,” she said.

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BCDO counsel is writing a legal opinion on Ferriero's future


With nothing in the Bergen County Democratic Organization’s bylaws that gives authority to oust a sitting chairman, the party’s general counsel is working on a legal opinion to see if there is a mechanism to oust indicted Chairman Joe Ferriero.

“I’m working on a legal opinion right now, actually as we speak,” said counsel Paul Kaufman, who had no further comment on the matter.

An opinion is expected to be given to the party’s executive committee --  who voted for a resolution calling on Ferriero to resign by January 15 if he is not cleared on all eight corruption counts before then -- within the next several days.

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Menendez and Lautenberg supported auto bailout

Senators Bob Menendez (D-Hoboken) and Frank Lautenberg (D-Cliffside Park) both voted in favor of the automaker bailout that failed last night.

The purpose of the vote was to end a filibuster by the bill’s opponents. While supporters of the bailout had 52 votes in favor of cloture, they fell eight short of the 60 needed to proceed.

The vote was mainly, but not entirely, along party lines.

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The Back Room

Christie takes state helicopter to campaign in Connecticut

Gov. Chris Christie took the "upper level" -- helicoptering over the George Washington Bridge -- to beat rush hour traffic from his home state to a recent GOP fundraiser with Connecticut gubernatorial contender Tom Foley, according to a Hearst Media report.

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: July 24th

  Of friends, enemies, transactions and transportation: the evolving political relationship of Bob Menendez and Steve Fulop The image yesterday in Washington D.C. of powerful U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) walking the hallways with Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop sent a signal of Menendez’s willingness to get behind...

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Op-Ed

NJ Legislature must get behind statewide standard of responsible contracting

By Michael Capelli As a 30 year union carpenter, I learned first-hand how important it was to have the right tools for the job. Now as the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the 30,000 men and women of the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters I... Read More >

Contributors

 The following letter was sent today to Republican state legislators, county chairs, state committee members, and New Hampshire... more »
(7-23-14) Rabner Opinion Keeps “Christie for President” Alive - Gov. Chris Christie’s fight to prevent same-sex marriage in New Jersey ended with Chief Justice Stuart Rabner.... more »
The Perry-Paul Debate is Healthy for the GOP – and for America  The foreign policy debate in the media between prospective GOP Presidential candidates Texas Governor Rick Perry and... more »
(Washington DC)-- Two recent votes on Capitol Hill suggest an overdue and radical departure from our nation's Draconian and costly War on Drugs.  It's a long-overdue discussion (and not just... more »

Quote of the Day

quote of the day

"Gov. Chris Christie says he won’t campaign for the Republican gubernatorial candidate in New York because the cause is hopeless: Gov. Andrew Cuomo is ahead by more than 30 points. But he will campaign in New Hampshire, over and over, where the Republican is also trailing by more than 30 points. What’s the reason? It may be that New Hampshire holds the nation’s first presidential primary. It may be that he doesn’t want to mess with Cuomo, who knows where the skeletons are buried at the Port Authority. But one thing is certain: Gov. Straight Talk is spinning again. And it seems to be habit-forming." - columnist Tom Moran

- Star-Ledger

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