Sources: intensified talks around legislative committee examining Bridgegate spark backroom interpretations

Sources: intensified talks around legislative committee examining Bridgegate spark backroom interpretations

TRENTON – Gov. Chris Christie’s that’s-a-wrap call today to the Select Committee on Investigation (SCI) examining Bridgegate laid bare those underground arguments in the halls and chambers of the Statehouse about how lawmakers should proceed.

"Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg is the co-chair of the committee and, as I have said in the past, I will rely on her leadership and the work of the committee to determine when the SCI's investigation is over - not on the governor's opinion," said Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) (pictured).

But even as Christie denounced the SCI and urged an end, sources say Sweeney’s very recent inquiries into the committee’s actions have lawmakers and others close to the investigation questioning the senate president’s commitment at this point.

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Chivukula on BPU appointment: I'm ready

Chivukula on BPU appointment: I'm ready

TRENTON - Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula (D-17) was riding high in spirits following this morning's news that Gov. Chris Christie has nominated him to serve as the state's next Board of Public Utilities Commissioner.

He beamed into a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing earlier to confirm with members his interview for Monday, when he'll return for a formal vetting.

"I take it as a great opportunity, honor and privilege, especially because I am probably one of the first South Asians to be appointed to the Board of Public Utilities," Chivukula, Chairman of the Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee, told PolitickerNJ on his way out. Chivukula was the first Indian American elected to the Assembly and the fourth Indian-American in the country to be elected to state office.

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Former Manalapan Mayor found guilty on 11 counts, including wire and mortgage fraud and obstruction of justice

Former Manalapan Mayor found guilty on 11 counts, including wire and mortgage fraud and obstruction of justice

The former mayor of Manalapan was convicted at trial today on charges related to his acquisition of farmland in Monmouth County, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.  

Andrew Lucas, 37, was found guilty today on all 11 counts of an indictment charging him with wire fraud, an illegal monetary transaction, loan application fraud, false statements to the IRS, aggravated identity theft, obstruction of a grand jury investigation and falsification of records in a federal investigation.

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Trenton's Caldwell-Wilson braces for result in Scottish independence election

Trenton's Caldwell-Wilson braces for result in Scottish independence election

Mulling over independence from England, the Scottish people have roughly an hour left before the polls close in their native land.

Among them is Trenton Councilwoman Marge Caldwell-Wilson, who wants independence.

“It’s hard to say to say how this is going to go," Caldwell-Wilson told PolitickerNJ in an old country telephone interview. “A lot of the older people are afraid of change. There has been a huge late surge of young people for independence.”

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Echoing Christie, O'Toole says SCI should end its 'legislative meddling'

Echoing Christie, O'Toole says SCI should end its 'legislative meddling'

TRENTON - State Senator Kevin O'Toole (R-40) is firmly behind Gov. Chris Christie in ending the "legislative meddling"  into the circumstances surrounding last year's George Washington Bridge lane closings, colloquially called 'Bridgegate,' by members of the Select Committee on Investigations.

Just a few hours after Christie brought the hammer down on members of SCI, telling them to "wrap up" their work and "do their job," O'Toole expressed a similar sentiment to PolitickerNJ.

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Nurses and healthcare workers back Tedesco and Cho in Bergen County

Nurses and healthcare workers back Tedesco and Cho in Bergen County

NJ’s largest union of nurses and healthcare workers , the Health Professionals and Allied Employees (HPAE), announced  endorsements today for  Roy Cho  for Congress in the  5th Congressional  district and Jim Tedesco for Bergen County Executive.

“Everyday, nurses and health professionals work hard to provide quality care for their patients and they need elected officials both locally and in Washington D.C. who will work just as hard to protect and put care first,” said Ann Twomey, president of the 12,000 member union. “As healthcare undergoes rapid change, our patients encounter a confusing system that doesn't always put their needs first. They need advocates like Roy Cho and Jim Tedesco who will.”work tirelessly to not only ensure that our health care system works, but that the men and women at the front lines of public health have the support they need to do their jobs.”

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Menendez's bill for Ukrainian military assistance, Russia sanctions, passes out of committee

Menendez's bill for Ukrainian military assistance, Russia sanctions, passes out of committee

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee unanimously passed the Ukraine Freedom Support Act of 2014 today by a vote of 18 to 0.

Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) introduced the act along with Ranking Member Bob Corker (R-TN). According to Menendez's office, it imposes broad sanctions on Russia’s defense, energy, and financial sectors, as well as increasing military and non-military assistance for Ukraine.

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CD2 Crossfire: Hughes hits back at LoBo's fundraising record

CD2 Crossfire: Hughes hits back at LoBo's fundraising record

Words of anger and words of blame cascaded back and forth between the two opponents in CD2.

Democrat Bill Hughes, Jr., launched a television attack ad on incumbent Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-2), prompting the incumbent to strike back.

The congressman said Hughes was hypocritical to stand with casino workers on one day then hobnob with former Governor Ed Rendell the next.

That caused the Hughes Campaign to return fire...

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The Back Room

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: September 19th

NBC News: Federal charges ruled out for Christie in Bridgegate scandal NBC News tonight is reporting that federal investigators say after nine months of investigating Bridgegate there is 'no evidence" that Gov. Chris Christie had advance knowledge about any politically motivated scheme around the bridge lane closures at the...

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Op-Ed

Legislation needed for publicly financed gubernatorial elections

By JEFF BRINDLE It is critical that the Legislature soon enact a pending bill that would ensure the state’s Gubernatorial Public Financing Program is available in the event of a special election for governor.  Not only is there no current legal... Read More >

Contributors

Sports and politics do mix: Welcome the next NFL Commissioner, Condi Rice          There are many sports fans who insist on believing that old bromide that sports and politics do... more »
(9-17-14) Viral Video Prompts Questionable NJ Municipal Ordinance -  Socrates said, “While I might disagree with what you say, I will defend to the death your right to say... 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

“The fact is that they’ve been digging around for eight months now and have found absolutely nothing. Wrap up your work. Do your job." - Gov. Chris Christie

- PolitickerNJ

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