Why is Levine running?

Why is Levine running?
Franklin Mayor Brian D. Levine is considering a bid for the Republican nomination for Governor in 2009

Franklin Township Mayor Brian D. Levine is thinking about getting in the race for the Republican nomination for Governor, and he's won twice in a heavily Democratic town. Levine is supposed to be smart, hardworking, and a pretty good retail campaigner. But few pundits think the obscure certified public accountant from Somerset County can win a statewide primary.

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Andrews won't rule out future statewide bid

Andrews won't rule out future statewide bid

Rob Andrews will return for his eleventh term in Congress next year, and after losing two statewide races, it's unclear whether the last will be the final one.

Andrews ran a close second in the 1997 Democratic gubernatorial primary against James E. McGreevey, was passed over to succeed Gov. Corzine in the Senate, and mounted a primary challenge against incumbent U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg this year, only to lose by 25 percentage points. But despite those three dispiriting defeats, he still won't rule out the possibility of another statewide run some day, and prefers not to speculate on whether the last one hurt his prospects.

"That's really not for me to decide. That's for voters to decide and leaders of the party," said Andrews (D-Haddon Heights) in a phone interview yesterday.

Political insiders acknowledge that there are a thousand lives in politics, but see Andrews's defeat as being particularly hard to crawl back from - and not just because of the lopsided margin.

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Hooker named new NJN anchor

Hooker named new NJN anchor
Jim Hooker

State House Correspondent Jim Hooker will succeed Kent Manahan as anchor of NJN News effective January 2009, according to Michael Aron, interim director of NJN News and Public Affairs. 

“After careful deliberation and consultation, I am pleased to name Jim Hooker as anchor of NJN News Aron announced. “Jim is a seasoned journalist with deep background in the issues and politics of the state and credibility in the state capitol. He has represented NJN nationally and abroad, and at forums around the state. He brings weight and years of experience to the anchor chair. Jim also will be managing editor of the news and will be influential in the overall direction and tone of the newscast.”

“As NJN News State House correspondent, Jim Hooker brings two decades of award-winning reporting to build on the legacy that Kent Manahan has established as anchor,” said Elizabeth Christopherson, executive director of NJN Public Television and Radio. “We are delighted to recognize other members of the NJN award-winning team: Mike Curtis, the current producer of NJN News, who has been promoted to executive producer, and Peggy Micucci, assignment editor, who will be executive editor.”

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DaBronzo gets 30 months in prison

A former business agent of Local 89 of the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Asbestos Workers of the United States and Canada today received 30 months in federal prison for embezzling approximately $829,000 from Local 89 and one of its employee benefit funds, according to U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie.

John DaBronzo, 57, of Hamilton Square, got the news from U.S. District Judge Joel A. Pisano, who also also ordered DaBronzo to make restitution in the amount of $829,763.

Awaiting a prison assignement, DaBronzo is free on bail. 

He pleaded guilty on June 16 to embezzling approximately $396,000 from the checking account of Local 89 Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee Fund while he was the administrator of the fund; and for embezzling approximately $433,000 in remittance checks received from employers having collective bargaining agreements with Local 89.

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Former Torricelli aide arrested on child porn charges

An aide to U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) who used to work for former New Jersey U.S. Sen. Robert Torricelli was fired last week after he was arrested on child pornography-related charges, the Washington Post reports.

According to information available on the internet, the suspect, Jeff Rosato, worked as a staff assistant for Torricelli from 2001 until he left office in 2003. 

After another suspect led investigators to Rosato, after which they said that they found pornographic images and videos of children on his home computer.

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Marchand considers Assembly bid

Marchand considers Assembly bid
Republican Arthur Marchand, defeated for re-election as Cumberland County Surrogate last week, has not ruled out a State Assembly bid in the 3rd district next year

Cumberland County Surrogate Arthur Marchand, who lost his reelection bid last week along with the rest of the county’s Republican slate, tells his friends that he was “Obamatised.”

But after that stinging loss, Marchand, a Hopewell resident and former Cumberland County Prosecutor, said that he hasn’t closed the door to anything-- even an Assembly run in the 3rd legislative District against four-term incumbents John Burzichelli and Douglas Fisher.

Last year, Burzichelli and Fisher beat Republicans Phil Donohue and Jeffrey Stepler by more than 10,000 votes each.

“I think it’s always a swing district. I think as goes the 3rd district, so goes the state,” said Marchand. “How it goes next year with Corzine at the top of the ticket, I don’t know. I really don’t know think it will be a great year for Democrats.”

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Castner headed to Gibbons

Castner headed to Gibbons

Assembly Majority Executive Director Bill Castner will leave his post in January to become a Director at Gibbons P.C. – the law firm of his longtime mentor Chief Justice James Zazzali. Gibbons is ranked among the nation's top 200 law firms by the American Lawyer.

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More Treasury Secretary buzz about Corzine

The Wall Street Journal yesterday reported on increased buzz about Gov. Corzine being tapped by president-elect Barack Obama to become Secretary of the Treasury.

The article cited Service International Employees Union President Andy Stern’s praise of Corzine, and noted that “other handicappers are following Corzine because he has such a range of experience in both the public and private sectors.”

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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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