Hayden takes his name out of U.S. Attorney mix

Hayden takes his name out of U.S. Attorney mix
Defense attorney Joseph Hayden says he won't seek appointment as the U.S. Attorney from New Jersey

Joe Hayden, a prominent defense lawyer whose name has surfaced in legal and political circles as a potential pick for U.S. Attorney, took his own name out of the mix today.

“It is an honor that people within the legal community suggested that my name be considered as a candidate for the next United States Attorney,” said Hayden in response to an inquiry from PolitickerNJ.com.  “I have reflected upon it, but I am convinced that I have longstanding commitments to clients -- a half dozen clients -- that would not make this possibility feasible.”

Hayden represents Bergen County Democratic Chairman Joe Ferriero, who was indicted in September on eight corruption counts.  He also represents former Nets star Jayson Williams, who faces a retrial for manslaughter over the shooting of his limo driver in 2002. 

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Cresitello won't run for governor, and remains undecided on mayoral reelection bid

Morristown Mayor Donald Cresitello would love to run for governor.

Specifically, he’d like to take on Gov. Jon Corzine, a man who arrived in office with some flashy business credentials but whom Cresitello doesn’t think has done a good job. 

The governor’s suggestion of a pension holiday for towns and counties represents the governor’s latest gaffe, in the view of the mayor who earlier this year ran aground in his primary challenge of U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-Cliffside Park), when he finished behind Lautenberg and U.S. Rep. Rob Andrews (D-Haddon Heights)  with 10 percent of the vote. 

“We wanted exposure,” Cresitello admitted today in a telephone interview. “Andrews took away my opportunity. We couldn’t raise the money once Andrews got in there. If he hadn’t gotten in the race, we could’ve raised the $5 million he raised.”

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Allies Sweeney and DiVincenzo assume divergent positions on pension deferral

Allies Sweeney and DiVincenzo assume divergent positions on pension deferral
Senate Majority Leader Stephen Sweeney (D-Gloucester)

Although they represent different parts of the state, County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo and state Sen. Majority Leader Stephen Sweeney with a few exceptions – the sales tax fight two years ago comes to mind - usually end up on the same side.  

This time, however, it’s not looking as though the two men are going to get eyeball to eyeball on the state pension deferral, which Sweeney opposes and DiVincenzo supports.   

It’s one of those moments when two politicians whose careers have run along parallel lines suddenly veer into each other’s path and create an unmistakable flashpoint.   

 

DiVincenzo desperately wants the legislature to sign off on Gov. Jon Corzine’s brainchild bill enabling counties, municipalities, and school boards during an economic downturn to defer their state pension payments by 50 percent over a three-year period, which would total $1.3 billion.

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Stender says Lance's moderate positions on social issues made him a tougher opponent than Ferguson

Stender says Lance's moderate positions on social issues made him a tougher opponent than Ferguson

Anyone who watched NJN on election night witnessed it: Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Fanwood), who had been the favorite in the 7th District House race, choking back tears as she attempted to explain -- and no doubt understand -- why she lost to state Sen. Leonard Lance (R-Flemington).

It was a particularly bruising moment for Stender, who two years earlier had come within one point of ousting incumbent U.S. Rep. Mike Ferguson (R-Warren Twp).

"It was really a crushing defeat for me," Stender said today.

It was also a huge political comeback for Lance, who was seen by fellow Republicans during his time as Senate Minority Leader as not partisan or aggressive enough. Facing a potential challenge for that post last year by state Sen. Tom Kean, Jr. (R-Westfield), Lance withdrew to become the ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Six weeks after her loss, Stender is making the best of it, relishing her first holiday season in the last two election cycles during which she does not have to focus on raising money.

Today, Stender sought to dispel the notion that her campaign failed in large part because of internal divisions and pressure from outside groups to take on out-of-state staff and focus on less pertinent issues like birth control.

"That stuff is nonsense. It's concocting drama in the aftermath," said Stender, referring to contentions that EMILY's List officials had pressured her to put Washington, DC-based staffers in control of the campaign.

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Stender plans to run for re-election to Assembly seat

Stender plans to run for re-election to Assembly seat
Assemblywoman Linda Stender says she has her party's support to seek another term

Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Fanwood) said today that she intends to run for re-election to the assembly in 2009.

“My immediate plan is to seek another term to the legislature, and I have great support from the state chair, my county chair, and I’ve got very good working relationships with my delegation members,” she said. “There’s a lot of important work to be done, we’re in a tough time in our economy and state and I’ll be looking forward to taking on those challenges.”

An Inside Edge report from just before the election said that a Union County Democratic official suggested that the party would try to get Stender to step aside if she lost the House race. But Stender said today that she has not felt any pressure to leave her seat.

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Corzine makes staff moves

Corzine makes staff moves
Gov. Jon Corzine picked Edward McBride as his new Chief of Staff to replace Lisa Jackson, who will become the new EPA Administrator.

Governor Jon Corzine today announced a series of staff changes triggered by the appointment of Lisa Jackson as the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  Edward McBride was named Chief of Staff and William Castner will replace McBride as Chief Counsel.

Corzine also picked Diane Legreide, a former Casino Control Commissioner and state Motor Vehicles Director, as his new Deputy Chief of Staff.  She will replace Maggie Moran, who is expected to leave in a few weeks to run the Governor’s re-election campaign.  Albert Alvarez, who has served as Cabinet Liaison, will also serve as Deputy Chief of Staff.

Jaimee Gilmartin, the Governor’s Director of Appointments, has been promoted to Director of Operations.  She will replace Jose Lozano, who will move to the Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness.  Josh Zeitz, who was the Democratic candidate for Congress against U.S. Rep. Christopher Smith this year, is joining Corzine’s staff as a Senior Policy Advisor.

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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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