Obama officially absorbs Clinton's chief N.J. fundraising arm

Obama backer Michael Passante, right, and North Ward Democratic leader Steve Adubato, who supported Clinton in the primary.: Politicker photoObama backer Michael Passante, right, and North Ward Democratic leader Steve Adubato, who supported Clinton in the primary.: Politicker photo

WEST ORANGE - A group of onetime Hillary Clinton fundraisers today committed to raising dollars for Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign, according to a release issued by Richard McGrath, spokesman of the Democratic State Committee.

"Democrats in New Jersey are unifying behind Barack Obama in every way under the leadership of Governor Corzine," said party chairman Joe Cryan. "We are supporting him with financial resources, political organization and grass roots activism. We are one party behind one candidate. This commitment from these top fundraisers is another big step towards victory in November."

Those who breakfasted with Gov. Jon Corzine and Cryan at Pal’s Cabin included Obama State Director Tricia Mueller, and Obama Policy Director Mark Alexander. Joining them were about ten former Clinton backers, each of whom pledged to raise $10,000 or more within the next few days, said Cryan.

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Quintana supports keeping seat vacant until Nov. 4 - unless Rone wins appeal

At-large Councilman Luis Quintana: Politicker photoAt-large Councilman Luis Quintana: Politicker photo 

NEWARK - Coming off a press conference in which he stood with former Councilwoman Dana Rone, veteran Councilman Luis Quintana said he favors keeping Rone’s Central Ward council seat vacant until the public votes in a Nov. 4th special election.

"I’d be willing to introduce a resolution saying leave it alone," Quintana told PolitickerNJ.com.

Keeping the seat unoccupied makes sense from several vantage points, argued Quintana, an at-large representative who lives in the city’s North Ward.

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Corzine: Christie record credible 'in one area'

Gov. Jon Corzine in West Orange today: Politicker photoGov. Jon Corzine in West Orange today: Politicker photo

WEST ORANGE - A Quinnipiac University poll released this morning that shows Gov. Jon Corzine just one percentage point ahead of potential GOP candidate U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie does not surprise Corzine, who said it’s the unfortunate consequence of making tough decisions.

"We will continue to do things to make sure New Jerseyans have a much better quality of life in the long-run, though it may be unpopular in the short term," said the governor, who according to Quinnipiac trails Christie by a margin of 41-40%.

With high food and gas prices and America in the midst of a recession, New Jerseyans do not feel good about the national environment, said Corzine. If he were a Republican he would also be interested in a Christie candidacy. The law and order man has a "relatively high profile, name recognition and a credible record. ...in one area," Corzine said.

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Calling her punishment 'too severe,' Newark Council stands up for Rone - for now

Former Councilwoman Dana Rone greets well-wishers in City Hall Rotunda on Tuesday.: Politicker photoFormer Councilwoman Dana Rone greets well-wishers in City Hall Rotunda on Tuesday.: Politicker photo 

NEWARK - Former Councilwoman Dana Rone stood in the rotunda of City Hall today with her colleagues and in front of cheering supporters, apparently happy to be reunited with the Newark City Council.

"I'm grateful for the support of my colleagues," said Rone in a brief statement.

How far the council would go to support her was not clear on Tuesday.

The lower courts have rendered their verdicts, said West Ward Councilman Ronald Rice, but the Council intends to support the former Councilwoman as she continues to pursue the process at the appellate level and in the state Supreme Court.

Flanked by Rone, and fellow council people, who this morning in council chambers helped Rice pass a resolution in favor of standing beside the former Central Ward councilwoman, Rice said the penalty in Rone's case is too severe.

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Quinnipiac prez poll tomorrow

Who is leading in the contest for New Jersey’s fifteen electoral votes, Barack Obama or John McCain?  Quinnipiac University will release a new poll on Wednesday morning, which will include a head to head presidential matchup, and New Jersey’s position on offshore drilling and other energy issues.

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McCain adds campaign stop in N.J.

Republican presidential candidate John McCain has added a campaign stop in Bergen County today, prior to his fundraising event at the Teaneck Marriott.  Cindy McCain, who is attending a fundraiser this morning at the Rumson home of former Port Authority Chairman Lewis Eisenberg, will also add a campaign stop in Monmouth County to her schedule.

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Quinnipiac: Corzine and Christie in '09 dead heat

U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie is in a statistical dead head with Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine in a 2009 gubernatorial poll: Getty Images PhotoU.S. Attorney Christopher Christie is in a statistical dead head with Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine in a 2009 gubernatorial poll: Getty Images Photo
A new Quinnipiac University poll released early this morning shows Gov. Jon Corzine and U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie are in a statistical dead heat in the 2009 race for Governor. Christie leads Corzine 41%-40%.

Less than four out of ten New Jersey voters (37%) say Corzine deserves to be re-elected to a second term. Half the voters (50%) say he does not.

"Gov. Jon Corzine is in trouble. Since most New Jersey voters say they don't know a lot about Christopher Christie, Gov. Corzine's record and inability to unscramble the state's budget mess is pulling him down," said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

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Corzine's continues to struggle to win voter approval

Gov. Jon Corzine has a 42%-48% approval ratingGov. Jon Corzine has a 42%-48% approval ratingGov. Jon Corzine’s job approval ratings continue to be upside-down, 42%-48%, a slight improvement from his 38%-52% rating in June, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll that was released this morning.

On his handling of the state budget, Corzine has a 33%-56% approval rating, and 39% of New Jersey registered voters say the state has gotten worse under his leadership. 49% say things have remained the same, and 9% say the state has gotten better.

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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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Op-Ed

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 >

Contributors

(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

- PolitickerNJ.com

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