Obama follows the beat of a different drum

Barack Obama has shifted his energy strategy after the McCain campaign pounced on comments Obama made about properly inflating our tires.

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Judge rules that Rone must surrender her council seat; denies request for stay

Judge rules that Rone must surrender her council seat; denies request for stay

NEWARK - An incident caught on police camera a year and a half ago proved the downfall of Central Ward Councilwoman Dana Rone, as Essex County Judge Patricia Costello on Tuesday morning decided that Rone would have to give up her office as a councilwoman.

"The state's request for a waiver of forfeiture is denied," said Costello, in response to an 11th hour letter sent to the judge by Essex County Prosecutor Paula Dow, who reversed an earlier recommendation of forfeiture.

"I find that whether an individual is fit to serve public office is not sufficient reason to waive forfeiture," the judge said to one of the arguments offered by Rone’s lawyer, Raymond Hamlin.

Costello ruled that it is "abundantly clear" that on Dec. 20, 2006, Rone used her office to obstruct justice, and contributed to heightening emotions - not diffusing them - at a Rutgers University police traffic stop of her nephew.

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GOP activist launches 'Draft Lonegan' for governor organization

GOP activist Dan Gallic today announced that he is forming an organization to draft former Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegan to run for governor.

"Our goal is to create a situation where should Steve decide to run, there will be a grass-roots and finance organization already in place to secure him the Republican nomination," Gallic said in a release.

"Steve Lonegan’s conservative leadership is the reason he is the Republican Party’s premier leader when so many other ‘leaders’ have been asleep at the wheel," Gallic added. "No one in New Jersey has the record of accomplishment Steve Lonegan has built: from stopping McGreevey’s gasoline tax hike to defeating two ballot questions last November and the Corzine borrowing and toll hike scheme last Spring."

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Panel meets to determine Clean Elections future

An unofficial legislative committee will meet in two weeks to figure out the future of the state’s Fair and Clean Elections program, the status of which is in serious jeopardy.

The bill renewing the program, which was tested as a pilot project in 2005 and 2007, was pulled from consideration in June after both the programs’ backers and detractors raised concerns about the new legislation.

Last month it was dealt an even more serious setback, when the U.S. Supreme Court, in Davis v. Federal Election Commission, struck down the federal Millionaire’s Amendment, which allows out-funded candidates more leeway with campaign contribution limits. At the request of Assembly Democrats, the non-partisan Office of Legislative Services (OLS) wrote an opinion stating that the Clean Elections program’s “rescue funds” – meant to give a boost to candidates facing attacks from an outside group or a well-funded opponent who opted out of the program – would likely be ruled unconstitutional under the Supreme Court precedent.

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With '09 mayor's race on horizon, Hoboken's Cammarano and Mason wage political war

At-Large Councilman Peter Cammarano: Politicker photoAt-Large Councilman Peter Cammarano: Politicker photo 

HOBOKEN - Even members of his inner circle swear that they don’t yet know whether Mayor Dave Roberts plans to run for a third term in 2009.

Whatever his intentions, other Hoboken diehards are surfacing. No one’s announced yet, but fierce political battles now will undoubtedly have political consequences next year in this city stung by the embarrassment of a state takeover of its finances.

There are all of the usual speculations surrounding possible candidates. A sighting of former Councilwoman Carol Marsh at a municipal meeting provokes the conclusion in come corners that she’s definitely running. A recent inundation of photos of Mayor Roberts on the Hoboken website prompts someone else to opine that Roberts is running - bet on it.

Businessman and neighborhood kid made good Frank "Pupie" Raia?

Of course, he’s running, say Hoboken insiders. He always runs, and no doubt he will perpetuate his longstanding animus this year with Councilman Michael Russo, who clubbed him last year in their 3rd ward showdown.

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Herrmann to retire

Dr. Frederick Herrmann, the longtime Executive Director of the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission, has announced his retirement.

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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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The Back Room

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: August 28th

Chris Christie's Jekyll & Hyde complex We all know the story: An amiable, even-keeled doctor, in an effort to separate the good from his darker impulses, concocts and consumes a secret potion that, momentarily, induces a metamorphosis of physical and mental being and turns him into a monstrous and...

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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 >


(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 »
    My Richard Nixon Ambivalence   Today is the fortieth anniversary of President Richard Nixon’s resignation address to the nation on August 8, 1974. At that time, I was ambivalent about... 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

"He was a focal point for the disturbance." - former New Jersey Governor Brendan Byrne (the Essex County Prosecutor in July 1967), of former Newark Mayor Hugh Addonizio

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