Bergen Republicans want to save 'home rule'

ROCHELLE PARK -- In this one square mile town of 5,000, two Republican freeholder candidates, several local elected officials and one conservative activist held a press conference today to rail Bergen County's Democratic government and what they characterized as its assault on home rule.

It's the latest campaign theme of Republicans Chris Calabrese, Paul Duggan and Jeff Heller, who are running for freeholder in what has the potential to be a competitive race against Democratic incumbents David Ganz, Bernadette McPherson and Vernon Walton.

The Republicans call it a "campaign to save small towns" - or, to be exact, the 35 small Bergen County municipalities that County Executive Dennis McNerney hopes will at least consider consolidation.

Bergen County is made up of 70 municipalities, and is often cited as the prime example of the "boroughitis" that prevailed in the late 19th century, when small boroughs split off from larger townships.  The Republicans present raised the specter of a large, multi-town government being run similarly to what they said were less transparent governments in big cities like Newark and Paterson.

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McSorley says Larkin is ducking OPRA requests

Republican Mercer County Sheriff candidate Jim McSorley said that three OPRA requests he filed last week for information about the sheriff’s office have either been ignored or have been answered with incomplete information.

McSorley, a retired state police captain who’s challenging incumbent Democrat Kevin Larkin, said that he was informed that the office has not kept a table of organization for the last three years.

“Each local police department in Mercer County has a table of organization to serve the same purpose. Even McDonald’s doesn’t run without a table of organization and the fact that Sheriff Larkin has been running his office in such a reckless manner for so many years once again proves his record of mismanagement,” said McSorley.

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Frelinghuysen to face Wyka in Parsippany

Temple Beth Am of Parsippany will host an 11th Congressional District candidates forum between 10 a.m. and noon on Sunday, Oct. 26.

U.S. Rep Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-Harding) and his Democratic challenger, Tom Wyka, are scheduled to speak and answer questions from the audience.

The event is free and open to the public.

Frelinghuysen defeated Wyka in their 2006 matchup.

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Activists press council for ballot question re. government change in New Brunswick

A New Brunswick citizen action group called Empower Our Neighborhoods wants to put a question to voters about whether the city should change from all at-large representation on the city council to a ward system.

A judge initially certified the group’s 1,100 petitions to put the question on the Nov. 4th ballot, but the city council successfully requested a stay from Judge Heidi Willis Currier after the council and Empower Our Neighborhoods could not agree on the accompanying interpretive language on the ballot.

"The council's attorney asked for a stay in Superior Court on 9/22, two days before ballots were set to go to print with our question on it," said Empower Our Neighborhoods representative Charles Kratovil.

Marvin Brauth of Wilentz, Goldman, & Spitzer represents the city council in the case.

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Bruno vows to take union fight to the feds, if he must

Denied a shot to face CWA Local 1040 President Carolyn Wade when the elections committee determined that several of his ballot petitions were faulty, challenger Tom Bruno says he means to exhaust every internal remedy before issuing a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor.

"I’m going to keep plugging away because people should have a right to nominate a person of their choosing," said Bruno, whose campaigned vigorously throughout the summer for a chance to go up against Wade in September before the elections committee tossed him.

As Wade prepares for her swearing-in ceremony for another term at the Trump Taj Mahal next week, Bruno continues to protest how the president of nearly 20 years and her allies derailed his candidacy on a technicality.

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Davis to Corzine: skip McGettigan fundraiser

Atlantic County Republican Chairman Keith Davis today challenged Gov. Corzine to skip a fundraiser for Sheriff Jim McGettigan and the county freeholder candidates scheduled for Monday.

Since Corzine last week outlined a series of sweeping ethics reforms, Davis said it would make sense for him to stay away from Atlantic County.

“By withdrawing from the event, the Governor can make an unequivocal statement that he is committed to ending pay to play and the practice of wheeling campaign contributions and that he will refuse to lend his presence, the prestige of his office, or his assistance to those who violate existing financing laws,” said Davis in a press release.

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Payne wants stronger working and middle class protections in bailout package

U.S. Rep. Donald Payne (D-Newark): Politicker file photoU.S. Rep. Donald Payne (D-Newark): Politicker file photo 

U.S. Rep. Donald Payne (D-Newark) didn't vote for the Wall Street bailout package the first time, and he would need to see significant changes benefiting low income Americans and workers before he could support it on a second pass.

"We have not extended unemployment benefits or mortgage relief," Payne said moments ago in an appearance on MSNBC.

The veteran congressman acknowledged there is no question the economy is in crisis mode, but insisted on seeing stronger bottom up measures.

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Tornoe's Toons: Dick who?

Tornoe's Toons: Dick who?

To view more cartoons by editorial cartoonist Rob Tornoe, click here.

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: July 23rd

Between RGA gigs, Christie doesn't skip a beat bashing Trenton Dems at seaside LGI town hall LONG BEACH ISLAND – Gov. Chris Christie squeezed LBI between trips to IowaNew HampshireConnecticut and – tomorrow – Colorado – just long enough to puncture his favorite Trenton-based targets in front of a...

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Legislation needed to restore balance in election financing

By JEFF BRINDLE Much has been written about the magnitude of campaign spending by independent special interest groups.  But until now, there has been little discussion about the impact. During the 2012 Presidential and Congressional contests,... Read More >


(7-23-14) Rabner Opinion Keeps “Christie for President” Alive - Gov. Chris Christie’s fight to prevent same-sex marriage in New Jersey ended with Chief Justice Stuart Rabner.... more »
The Perry-Paul Debate is Healthy for the GOP – and for America  The foreign policy debate in the media between prospective GOP Presidential candidates Texas Governor Rick Perry and... more »
(Washington DC)-- Two recent votes on Capitol Hill suggest an overdue and radical departure from our nation's Draconian and costly War on Drugs.  It's a long-overdue discussion (and not just... more »
New Jersey 2014 Primary Day Recap (6/4/14) - By the numbers. Worth the read for those interested in GOTV targeting and ballot position logistics.... more »

Quote of the Day

quote of the day

“We lived up to our end of the bargain. He didn’t live up to his end of the deal.” - Ed Connolly, president of the New Jersey Firemen’s Benevolent Association.

- The Bergen Record


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