The Denver adventures of Tom Barrett

Barrett and Kerry synchronize their BlackBerrys.: Politicker photoBarrett and Kerry synchronize their BlackBerrys.: Politicker photo  

DENVER - Essex County operative Tom Barrett didn’t really have a horse in the race at this point. But Essex County Freeholder Linda Lordi Cavanaugh and her friends did.

This would be Sen. Hillary Clinton’s (D-NY) "Don’t Cry for me Argentina" moment, and consummate party insider Barrett wanted to make sure the diehard Clinton supporters got there for the coming Clinton catharsis.

He settled up with the waiter at the Palms and high-stepped it for Lawrence Avenue where Cavanaugh and company were already hobbling double-time on high heels on their way out to hail a cab.

As the Clintonistas piled in, Barrett caught sight of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) emerging from one, and soft-shoeing after a high-class-looking brunette.

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Adler reflects on his moment in the sun

It was a big night for State Senator/3rd District congressional candidate John Adler, who got to share the main stage at the Democratic National Convention with Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman (DCCC) Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and several other top Democratic House prospects.

It was a brief but powerful moment in the spotlight for Adler, who spoke one sentence in front of the crowd. 

“In a governmental, political sense, it meant a lot to me to be with people who together want to make a better, more prosperous, stronger America,” reflected Adler hours afterwards.  “And frankly, on a more personal basis, it was thrilling to me to have my wife in the front section, in the Illinois delegation, to take a picture of me.”

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Ferriero: business as usual

DENVER -- While an FBI raid a law office might unsettle the average politician, Joe Ferriero does not fit into that category.

It was business as usual tonight for the ultra-powerful Bergen County Democratic Chairman, who came to the Pepsi Center tonight with a smile and a tan. 

“I was here last night, I’ll be here through the convention. I was hosting meetings, doing fundraising, doing everything I’ve done the last two conventions I’ve been a delegate,” he said, denying talk of his relatively low profile in the delegation. 

Ferriero’s law office was raided late last week as part of an ongoing federal probe by U.S. Attorney Chris Christie.  But he seemed confident as ever tonight, even pledging that Barack Obama is going to make an appearance in Bergen County.

“I’m sure that he will be in Bergen County,” he said.

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Choi says young people really will turn out for Obama

DENVER -- As one of the younger faces in the New Jersey delegation, Jun Choi, 37, insists this year will be different: instead of paying lip service to the Democratic candidate, young people will actually come out to vote for Barack Obama. 

More than they came out for Bill Clinton in 1992.  And certainly more than the lackluster youth vote for John Kerry in 2004. 

“The difference between Obama and past candidates is that Barack’s leadership inspired a movement that has excited a whole new generation of young people to get involved in politics,” said Choi while attending a party sponsored by a lobbying/public relations firm. 

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Ready for Clinton's close-up

State Party Chairman Joseph Cryan: Politicker photoState Party Chairman Joseph Cryan: Politicker photo

DENVER - It’s a few hours until Hillary’s close-up and the New Jersey delegation - both the Obama originals and the baby boom Clintonistas still nursing stubbed toes from the primary campaign, are imbibing heavily at the Palm’s in downtown Denver.

"This is a party that I’ve thrown for the delegation and friends of mine from all over the country," says party fundraiser Michael Kempner, head of MWW.

It is perhaps appropriate that Kempner is hosting this mixer a few hours before Clinton speaks. Kempner, after all, was a fierce Clinton partisan during the primary. Then he broke through the hurt feelings of the Group to become the earliest Obama backer among the Democratic Party fundraising elite.

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Clinton's on deck and it's the economy, stupid

Assembly Speaker Joe Roberts (D-Camden): Politicker photoAssembly Speaker Joe Roberts (D-Camden): Politicker photo 

DENVER - Foreign policy: advantage Republicans. Domestic policy: advantage Democrats.

It’s the old dichotomy Democrats have accepted ever since the assassination of Cold Warrior John Fitzgerald and the party’s implosion in the jungles of South East Asia.

For Assembly Speaker Joe Roberts (D-Camden), that old, dependable FDR battle cry of economic justice for all is what will bind the Dems in common cause coming out of this Democratic National Convention.

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Van Hollen showcases Adler at DNC

Joined by eight Congressional candidates, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) took the stage tonight in Denver and told Democrats that it's not enough to support U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.). "For the change we need, we not only need to elect Barack Obama as our next president, we need to give him a robust Democratic majority in Congress," he said.

He then introduced the eight Democrats to the country, including state Sen. John Adler (D-Cherry Hill), who he called "a fighter for the middle class."

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Newark Councilman James lauds Michelle Obama's speech

South Ward Councilman Oscar James II (center) confers with Booker staffers Terrance Bankston and Bari Mattes.: Politicker photoSouth Ward Councilman Oscar James II (center) confers with Booker staffers Terrance Bankston and Bari Mattes.: Politicker photo 

DENVER - A core member of the Booker Team, South Ward Councilman Oscar James II exulted in the speech delivered last night by Michelle Obama, even as he noted the persistent gloom of some Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) supporters in the New Jersey delegation.

"It makes me a little nervous because we have to be united," said James.

Widely hailed as a homerun by the New Jersey delegation, the speech by the wife of the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee did not go too heavy on family values to the detriment of hard, urban issues, in James’s view.

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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 >


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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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