Officially, Obama taps Mueller as state campaign chief

The Obama campaign announced today that Tricia Mueller, the political director for the New Jersey Regional Council of Carpenters, will serve as state Director of Obama’s New Jersey campaign. Bob Decheine, the Chief of Staff to Rep. Steve Rothman, will serve as a senior advisor to the campaign. 

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Nader-less Greens troubled by little traction

Although they number only 1,000 registered and dues-paying members, no longer have the heft of Ralph Nader in their midst, and can’t and won’t raise money to compete with the mainstream parties, the New Jersey Green Party insists it’s still relevant.

Nick Mellis of Lawrence Township, who in March succeeded George DeCarlo as the party’s state chairman, returned from Chicago ten days ago, where the Greens nominated former U.S. Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-Decatur) for president.

"We had a very successful convention," says Mellis, though he notes that in New Jersey the party "is experiencing growing pains," and unfortunately not fielding a U.S. Senate candidate this year.

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Capuana runs on name ID in Passaic

When a fire started by two children devoured the industrial base of the City of Passaic in 1984, Vincent Capuana remembers trying to summon some good during the aftermath.

"I thought, ‘Thank God nobody got killed, and now we have 25 acres open, which we can develop,’" he says.

That was almost 25 years ago, and all Passaic has to show for its rebuilding effort along the river are a Shoprite and a handful of small, scattered stores.

"Fifteen acres are still empty," says Capuana, 59, longtime director of community development, and president of the school board.

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With sympathy, his a different case from Rone's, says Healy

With sympathy, his a different case from Rone's, says Healy

Two nights and two incidents, both ultimately leading to convictions of two elected Jersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy: Politicker photoJersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy: Politicker photoofficials from New Jersey’s two biggest towns.

But while Jersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy today wished Newark Councilwoman Dana Rone the best, and said he hopes she is successful in her effort to remain on the City Council when she faces a Superior Court Judge Aug. 5, his office specified that his conviction and Rone’s are different.

In fact, in the words of Healy press secretary Jennifer Morrill, the cases are polar opposite.

While the court found Rone guilty of disorderly conduct after it determined that she intimidated a police officer and attempted to use her Central Ward Councilwoman status to circumvent the law on Dec. 20, 2006, Healy in his Bradley Beach dust-up with cops in June of 2007 did not attempt to exert the influence of his office on the situation, Morrill said.

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Baroni: McCain's NJ presence - and Mueller's on the other side - make for a fight

State Sen. Bill Baroni (R-Mercer): Politicker photoState Sen. Bill Baroni (R-Mercer): Politicker photo 

Sen. Bill Baroni (R-Mercer), state chairman of John McCain’s Republican presidential campaign, joked that he first knew he was ok with McCain when the gruff war vet called Baroni a jerk.

One of a handful of New Jersey elected officials who supported the Arizona senator at the start of the Republican primary, Baroni goes back nearly ten years with McCain. He left his job at a law firm in 1999 to try to help his candidate land the Republican nomination in 2000.

The New Jerseyan accompanied McCain on the campaign trail throughout Michigan, South Carolina and California. They eventually lost to Texas Gov. George W. Bush, but McCain and Baroni forged a political relationship.

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Lautenberg cancels Springsteen fundraiser

U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg has cancelled a fundraiser at a Bruce Springsteen concert on Sunday evening after the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority decided not to seek his campaign premium seats at face value, according to a report from The Record’s Charles Stile.  Lautenberg had asked for a block of 40 tickets the sports authority reserves from VIP’s and political insiders, which he planned to but for $108 each and resell them to donors for $1,500 per ticket. 

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Corzine reports from Israel

Gov. Jon Corzine: Politicker photoGov. Jon Corzine: Politicker photo 

Thirty-six hours into his trip to Israel, Gov Jon Corzine says he feels as though he's in New Jersey because of the large numbers of New Jersey visitors he keeps encountering.

He's hoping to build on the good connections.

"There is an enormous opportunity since Israel is focused on biotech and alternative energy," Corzine told reporters in an afternoon conference call. "There is a great opportunity to expand our business."

He noted the recent move of what he described as a small Israeli video telecom business to Fairlawn as an example of the kind of investment that benefits New Jersey.

Must of the geo-political discussions the governor says he has engaged in during his trip have had to do with the potential threat of Iran. He says among Israelis with whom he has talked, there is support for building an international coalition and imposing economic sanctions on Iran.

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The Back Room

McGreevey expresses no desire to be power broker in Newark mayoral race

Former New Jersey Governor James McGreevey might remember that former Newark Mayor Sharpe James played a significant role in helping him to get that title. But regarding the highly contentious Newark mayoral race between candidates Ras Baraka and Shavar Jeffries, McGreevey told PolitickerNJ.com on Thursday that he has no interest in picking a side.  

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: April 17, 2014

Bergen Dems demand Donovan cancel fundraiser with Christie after unlimited contributions commentsHACKENSACK - Bergen County Democratic Chairman Lou Stellato called on Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan to cancel a fundraiser scheduled for May 5 with Gov. Chris Christie after he made remarks on allowing unlimited campaign contributions to political...

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Op-Ed

The future of NJ Politics should not be politicians investigating politicians

By JON BRAMNICK Voices around the country agree with our concern that "bipartisan committee led by John Wisniewski is partisan." Below are observers who agree Wisneiwski's committee is not bipartisan: Chuck Todd, NBC News: "Democrats made a mistake... 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

“The new agenda is charter schools. It’s a profit-making business. $500 million will not be in our hands. The school board is an advisory board. We are not going to tell the governor to unleash the dollars. Don’t be fooled. It’s not abracadabra. It’s politics.” - Paterson Mayor Jeff Jones

- PolitickerNJ.com

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