In gubernatorial bid, Merkt literally runs in all 21 counties - and keeps running

In gubernatorial bid, Merkt literally runs in all 21 counties - and keeps running

Lacing on the sneakers and hitting the pavement, Assemblyman Richard Merkt (R-Mendham) started literally running for governor in early September. Today the Republican announced that his campaign has achieved a milestone as he has jogged in 118 communities located in all 21 counties of New Jersey since kicking off the plan in September.

“I have run in more than 20 percent of New Jersey’s municipalities and in every county throughout the state,” said Merkt. “It’s taken quite a bit of effort, but the feedback on issues I have received from local residents while doing it has been outstanding.

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Does this mean Star-Ledger has already decided not to endorse Corzine re-election?

Does this mean Star-Ledger has already decided not to endorse Corzine re-election?
Credit: Governor's Office Photo
John Farmer, the new Star-Ledger editorial page editor, says he doesn't believe in giving one party more than eight years in office

The NJ Voices interview with John Farmer, the new Editorial Page editor of the Star-Ledger, is a must-read for the New Jersey political community.  Farmer says he’s an Independent (a political “agnostic”) who voted for George W. Bush in 2000 “because I don't believe in giving any one party more than eight years in office.”

On the Star-Ledger’s political leanings:

“The editorials over the past eight years have been largely liberal.  But that's as much a function of events as it is of any internal inclination of the paper.  Largely, it's been a reaction to the record of the Bush administration. He hasn't given us much to cheer. We supported him quite enthusiastically after 9/11. But as the record of the Bush administration has unfolded, we've been pretty critical.”

On newspapers competing with the Internet:

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Alexander scheduled to stay in NJ, but if Obama offer arises, he could go to D.C.

Alexander scheduled to stay in NJ, but if Obama offer arises, he could go to D.C.
Mark Alexander at the Democratic National Convention in Denver.

Mark Alexander, state director of the Obama campaign during the primary and a senior policy director during the general, has not been offered a position in the president-elect's administration.

But he could be tempted if the offer comes his way.

“I am on the schedule to teach Constitutional Law at Seton Hall in the spring term, and I look forward to that," Alexander told PolitickerNJ.com.  "I love my life here in New Jersey, and I can’t comment on any future job possibilities in Washington. If I were offered an opportunity to serve in the Obama Administration, I would of course have to consider that opportunity seriously.”

Following the Feb. 5th New Jersey Primary, Alexander worked in other primary states in addition to later fulfilling duties in his homestate.

In the wake of the Nov. 4th election, he told friends that after months on the trail, he would find it difficult to uproot his family from Montclair to re-locate to Washignton, D.C.  Whatever happens, he said he wants to relish the time he has here in his home state in the aftermath of the grueling campaign.

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This Week in New Jersey Politics

Chris Christie resigns, Wayne Bryant is convicted, Jon Corzine remains upside-down, Democrats take Monmouth, and the race for Leonard Lance's State Senate seat takes shape.

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When it comes to Corzine re-election, Democrats trust Team Obama

When it comes to Corzine re-election, Democrats trust Team Obama
State Democratic Party Chair Joe Cryan, right, on the campaign trail with Elizabeth Councilman Nelson Gonzalez.

When State Democratic Chairman Joseph Cryan focused his players in the middle of the Obama presidential campaign, he told them to get ready for a long game, a two-year operation, in fact.

Despite all temptation to treat Obama’s victory like the ultimate end-zone rush and champagne romp, Election Night on Nov. 4th should be handled more the way a geared-up squad treats a 15-point lead in their favor in the locker room come half-time.

Everyone’s first job was to elect Sen. Barack Obama (D-Il.) president.  In comfortably accomplishing that, the campaign made up of 45 field organizers coordinated over a million volunteer calls, pounded on 750,000 door knocks, and built a volunteer base of more than 10,000 bodies.

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Weekend TV

Weekend TV
On the Record, hosted by NJN's Michael Aron, will feature legislative leaders from the League of Municipalities convention in Atlantic City

Tonight at 7:00 and Sunday at 10am, catch Reporters Roundtable on NJN, hosted by Michael Aron and featuring The Star Ledger’s Dusty McNichol, Gannett’s Greg Volpe, The Gloucester County Times’ Trish Graber and yours truly,  PolitickerNJ’s Matt Friedman.  We’ll discuss Christie ’09, the Wayne Bryant verdict, the race to replace Leonard Lance in the state Senate and the state budget crisis.

On the Record with Michael Aron will feature The Legislative Leadership Panel at the State League of Municipalities Conference: Assembly Speaker Joe Roberts, Senate Majority Leader Steve Sweeney, Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean Jr., and Assembly Minority Leader Alex DeCroce.   The show airs Sunday at 9am and 11am, and on Monday at 6:30am. 

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Schluter works in Holt's corner

Former Republican state Sen. Bill Schluter wants to see his old seat kept in moderate Republican hands, and he thinks Hunterdon County Freeholder Matt Holt is the man to do it.

Schluter, 81 is actively working to help Holt, the grandson of former U.S. Sen. Clifford P. Case, run for the 23rd District state Senate seat.

“I’m definitely in the camp of Matt Holt. I think he’s an outstanding individual and would make a good state senator. I’d like to retain the district as a Republican district, and I think he could do that,” said Schluter.

Holt has formed an exploratory committee, but yesterday told PolitickerNJ that he would not make a formal announcement until after Thanksgiving.

True, the 23rd District is drawn to be safely Republican, but, Schluter said, “stranger things have happened.”

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The Back Room

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: September 2nd

Campaign season now under way in Bergen County Politics is practiced year-round in Bergen County, and street-level campaigning has been going on quietly all summer. But both Republicans and Democrats say the Rutherford Street Fair on Labor Day signals a more intense phase of electioneering. (Ensslin/The Bergen Record) http://www.northjersey.com/news/campaign-season-now-under-way-in-bergen-county-1.1079080  ...

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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

"Governor Christie ripped President Obama this summer for failing to carve out some time during a Texas fundraising swing to visit the Mexican border, where the unprecedented flood of immigrant children from Central America had reached a crisis point. ...Yet Christie is not squeezing in a tour of the troubled border during his own three-day trade and diplomatic mission to Mexico, which is set to begin on Wednesday. The governor is planning a series of meetings with Mexican officials, including President Enrique Peña Nieto and the finance and energy ministers." - columnist Charles Stile

- The Bergen Record

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