Bergen Republicans ask feds to probe improvement authority

Bergen County Republican Chairman Bob Yudin today sent a letter to U.S. Attorney Chris Christie asking him to expand his probe of Bergen County officials to the operations and fee structure of the Bergen County Improvement Authority (BCIA).

Yudin pointed to County Executive Dennis McNerney’s appearance at a Glen Rock school board meeting, during which he urged members to use the BCIA to issue bonds for school expansion projects. Members of the school board, however, decided to seek the bonds on their own.

Yudin said that McNerney wanted to strong-arm the school board into accepting the bonds from the BCIA so that Bergen County Democratic Organization (BCDO) allies would stand to earn thousands of dollars in fees.

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Somerset Dems raise $50K with Menendez's help

BRANCHBURG- Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone (D-6) helped the Somerset County Democratic Party raise about $50,000 at a private fundraiser here on Saturday.

"Bob Menendez came up from Washington because he believes in the potential to turn this county blue," said Zenon Christodoulou, vice chair of the party.

Christodoulou and his fellow Democrats are fighting a long tradition of Republican rule in Somerset.

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In Hudson truce territory, Stack praises governor on budget, but calls for ‘better political thinking’

In Hudson truce territory, Stack praises governor on budget, but calls for ‘better political thinking’

Union City Mayor/Senator Brian P. Stack (D-Hudson): Politicker photoUnion City Mayor/Senator Brian P. Stack (D-Hudson): Politicker photo

UNION CITY - They call him "24-7," and on a brutally hot summer Friday when several other Hudson County public buildings look like the fixtures of a ghost town, Union City’s Brian P. Stack bounds down the steps of City Hall and keeps on the move.

"Yo, BPS," a kid wearing a headband cries in greeting, and he gives the mayor a fist pump as he cruises up 49th Street leading a contingent of the under 15 crowd.

"Go, Brian!" the kid shouts over his shoulder.

As he does every Friday, Stack presided over wedding ceremonies in the morning. Now he oversees mobile constituent services ten blocks away from City Hall in the concrete center of this Hudson County city of 70,000 densely packed people - mostly Latinos - where City Hall sports dual busts of George Washington and Cuban hero Jose Marti.

Police barricades stand at either end of the street, at Hudson and Palisade. A hot dog vendor gives out free dogs and sodas, courtesy of Stack - and under a tent in the middle of the block, the mayor in a tie with his suit jacket slung over the back of his chair, calls out the next name on a long list of names.

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DCCC monitoring Shulman, but won't commit to funding him

DCCC monitoring Shulman, but won't commit to funding him

The Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) seems confident that Democrats will pick up two House seats in New Jersey this year, but stopped short of promising financial help to Dennis Shulman, a blind Rabbi who is challenging Rep. Scott Garrett in the 5th district.

"The closer we got to Election Day the more opportunities developed. Sometimes as you get closer some fall off the list. The last time we went through this in 2006, the closer we got to voting day the more competitive," said Rep. Christopher Van Hollen (D-Md.) in a conference call with reporters today.

The DCCC's third priority in New Jersey is Shulman, who has raised a lot of money for a challenger in a long-shot district, and whose unique personal story has recently drawn national media attention from publications like Time, Newsweek and The New Yorker.

"The short answer is that we're very impressed with what they've done and we see that campaign on an upward trajectory," he said. Read More >

Jersey City ballot initiative battle not over

One of Jersey City Councilman Steve Fulop's two ballot initiatives suffered a severe blow earlier this week by a prominent city official, but Fulop said the move has energized his base.

"Yesterday I sent out that email letting people know about it. We got 60 new donors, 25 new volunteers and we're just starting," he said.

A move by Jersey City Corporation Counsel Bill Matsikoudis on Tuesday sparked outrage in an already politically charged atmosphere. Fulop had just turned in 1,800 signatures for two ballot initiatives: one which would enact new anti pay-to-play rules, and another that would bar council members from receiving more than one public salary (six of the nine council members have more than one taxpayer funded salary).

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Does plagiarism matter in the blogosphere?

Plagiarism is a bit like pornography - you know it when you see it, to paraphrase US Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart. 

But is the standard the same for bloggers? Given most blogs informal and causal tones, should bloggers be held to the same ethical standards of newspapers?

For some news organizations, "borrowing ideas" is OK, but not the "direct words".  For others, it is "one of journalism's unforgivable sins".
Case in point, if I was writing this for a newspaper, I would have probably written:  For some news organizations like the Detroit Free Press, "borrowing considered fair journalistic practice", but "words directly quoted from sources other than the writer's own reporting should be attributed."  For others like the Grand Forks Herald, it is "one of journalism's unforgivable sins", according to published excerpts on plagiarism by the Committee of Concerned Journalists.

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Winners & Losers of the Week

This week's Winners & Losers: Click here.

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The Back Room

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: April 23, 2014

Colorado politicians invite Christie to experience 'Rocky Mountain High'Colorado politicians slapped back at Gov. Chris Christie after he questioned their Rocky Mountain quality of life under the rule of legalized marijuana.“Whether it’s hiking season or snow season, we invite Gov. Christie to experience Colorado’s quality of life anytime,"  Sen....

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How the City of Paterson became a city in crisis

By HAYTHAM YOUNES As the May 13th election for Paterson officials nears, I've noticed a lot of candidates running using slogans and empty promises as if they weren't around watching Paterson get to where it's at today. I think it's important that... Read More >


(4-23-14) Bridgegate Witnesses Not "RATS" if Testimony is Forced -Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson’s decision last week was covered in most newspapers and blogs as an affirmation of the... more »
(Absecon Island, NJ) --With his shocking win in last year's election, Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian emerged as one of the most intriguing figures in the New Jersey political... 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 »

Quote of the Day

Quote of the day

“The good news of tonight is that these problems are fixable.” - Gov. Chris Christie



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