For New Jersey cartoonists, the best view of the convention is from behind their drafting table

A convention cartoon by Jimmy Margulies, editorial cartoonist for The Record.: ( convention cartoon by Jimmy Margulies, editorial cartoonist for The Record.: ( cartoonists from throughout the country converged upon the Democratic National Convention last week in Denver, and many more will attend this week's Republican National Convention in Minneapolis.

But their New Jersey comrades won't be joining them.

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Kean doesn't want drilling in New Jersey, but says ok to ANWR

MINNEAPOLIS - Offshore drilling.

It’s a dominant issue in the presidential campaign, and one that directly impacts state Sen. Sean Kean (R-Monmouth), whose district encompasses part of the Jersey Shore.

Kean wants federal protection from drilling for the New York/New Jersey area, and has a bill in the Statehouse urging such a measure.

His presidential candidate, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is meanwhile generating respect in the oil industry and from base conservatives with his exhortation to "drill here, drill now."

Despite what he sees as Sen, Barack Obama’s (D-Ill.) lack of a Shermanesque stand against drilling, N.J. Sierra Club Executive Director Jeff Tittel said the McCain model is much closer to that of President George W. Bush, and wrongheaded, in his view.

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With Andrews set to make a decision, Republicans wait to find out who they're running against

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. -- With U.S. Rep. Rob Andrews set to make a decision about his political future this week, Camden County Republican Chairman Rick DeMichele said that 1st District Republican candidate Dale Glading is “prepared and ready to respond.”

“Dale has been running a great campaign, because he’s been running it without an opponent. It’s helped the voters see that he’s focused on them and not a phantom opponent,” said DeMichele. 

Andrews left his ballot spot for reelection to the House to his wife Camille when he decided to mount a primary challenge against incumbent Sen. Frank Lautenberg.  Although just a placeholder candidate, Camille Andrews easily won that primary.  but Speculation persisted, however, that Rob Andrews to return to the seat, if he lost his primary against Lautenberg. 

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Kean would turn down a cabinet position

Kean would turn down a cabinet position

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. -- Former Gov. Tom Kean, Sr. has been offered three cabinet positions by two presidents – both Democrat and Republican – during his career. He turned them down each time.

If John McCain wins the presidency, Kean said, this time will be no different.

“Obviously I’d help the president out in any way I could if there was a commission or something I could help on a temporary basis, but I’m not looking for a full time position in Washington. I never have been,” he said.

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Murphy keeps his name out there

Morris County Freeholder John Murphy is keeping his gubernatorial toe in the water just in case.

Last night, he watched John Crowley’s ‘here I am’ moment on a Mississippi river boat cruise. He’s heard the speculation about the potential gubernatorial bids of U.S. Attorney Chris Christie, conservative activist Steve Lonegan and Assemblyman Rick Merkt, and he may not run himself.

“I’m leaning towards not running for governor in 2009, but I also want to have enough exposure and be out there with my foot in the water just in case,” said Murphy, who came in a distant third in the 2005 Republican primary. “If you look at what’s happened in New Jersey politics: Glen Cunningham drops dead of a heart attack, Jim McGreevey resigns in disgrace. Anything can happen, so in terms of ’09, I certainly want to stay somewhat relevant and keep my name out there."

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36th District in '09 could be a battle, but Schaer and Hipp stay low for now

MINNEAPOLIS - The potential players in next year’s 36th District Assembly contest are staying low at the moment.

According to sources, Assemblyman Gary Schaer (D-Passaic) is likely to run for his Assembly spot again rather than pursue the mayor’s seat that the convicted Sammy Rivera left vacant.

But at the moment, he remains coy about his plans.

"The filing deadline is Sept. 12th," he said of the Passaic mayor’s contest. "I’m not prepared to make a statement."

His district mate, Assemblyman Fred Scalera (D-Nutley), definitely intends to run for re-election in a district containing portions of three counties, that is nearly 54 percent concentrated in Bergen.

The big question on the GOP side is whether Rutherford Mayor Joe Hipp decides to challenge Schaer and Scalera.

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Democrats pick up CLC endorsement in Monmouth race


MINNEAPOLIS - The Monmouth and Ocean County Central Labor Council (CLC) has endorsed Democratic freeholder candidates Amy Mallet and Glenn Mason, who are running against incumbent GOP Freeholder Lillian Burry and her running mate, Red Bank Councilman John Curley.

Mallett and Mason hope to be able to ride post Feb. 5th voter registration, which favors Democrats in the traditionally Republican Monmouth County. Registered Democratic voters now outnumber Republicans in Monmouth by 10,000.

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Looking back at 1981: Kean versus Kramer

Pat Kramer, former mayor of Paterson, right, with state Sen. Joseph Kyrillos (R-Monmouth).: Politicker photoPat Kramer, former mayor of Paterson, right, with state Sen. Joseph Kyrillos (R-Monmouth).: Politicker photo 

MINNEAPOLIS - Among those at the Republican National Convention stand two venerable members of the Grand Old Party who once slugged it out in a gubernatorial primary.

The title "former governor" in front of the name Thomas Kean provides the most obvious evidence for his 1981 statewide victory over Lawrence "Pat" Kramer, former mayor of Paterson.

But the man who unwittingly helped Kean beat Kramer isn’t a Republican, and was actually in attendance last week at the Democratic National Convention.

He’s former Gov. Brendan Byrne, whose hand-picked successor - then-attorney general, John Degnan - didn’t have the backing of the Democratic Party chairs.

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The Back Room

Sweeney goes on offense

Days after Jersey City Mayor (and 2017 gubernatorial hopeful) Steve Fulop declared his support and fundraising devotion to South Jersey Congressional candidate Bill Hughes, Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) see-sawed onto Fulop's turf with his own "I can find pockets of love in every part of this state including JC" statement.

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: April 18, 2014

Fulop endorses Smith in Bayonne mayoral raceBAYONNE - Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop parachuted into the Bayonne mayoral race on Thursday night by endorsing incumbent Mayor Mark Smith."It is a pleasure to be with you here, Mark," said Fulop to a crowd of more than 125 supporters at a...

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Paterson can flourish with a second chance

By ASLON GOOW, SR. I have spent the past three decades raising a family, building a business, and working to improve our Paterson communities.  I am proud of those accomplishments.  In 2002, I spoke at an expungement... Read More >


(4-16-14) New Jersey Vote By Mail Law - The voter turnout for New Jersey’s November gubernatorial election was the lowest since the days of prohibition, coming... more »
When it comes to profiling Christie, facts are for wussies (4/10/14) - As the national media stories on our Guv pile up, expect more blunders about the Garden State.... more »
This week I begin a series called Dispatches from Somewhere Else. Based on my on-going experiences as an everyman in New Jersey politics, these Dispatches review the hollowness of... more »
Watching Governor Chris Christie's shocking BridgeGate implosion, it's easy to forget the time when he truly seemed unstoppable.  Blessed with incredible political gifts and a Jersey bluster to match,... more »

Quote of the Day

Quote of the day

"This is my first Mark Smith event. There have been a lot of changes in Hudson County over the last year and a half, and the most important change that has happened is that there really is unity. For the first time, we really are working together. Despite political differences. Mark and I have worked very hard to repair that. I'm really happy to be here in support of him, because I recognize that when you work together, politics becomes secondary and you really have time to focus on government, which is the most important thing." - Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop



Was Frank X. Graves of Paterson New Jersey's best mayor?:


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