By Wally Edge | July 10th, 2009 - 2:58pm
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If Gov. Jon Corzine picks TV reality star Randal Pinkett as the Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor, Pinkett will become the first African American to run statewide as a major party candidate in New Jersey.  Newark Mayor Kenneth Gibson sought the Democratic nomination for Governor in 1981 and 1985 without success.

The first Latino to run statewide was Robert Menendez, who was elected to the United States Senate in 2006.  Corzine would get credit for advancing the candidacies of two minority candidates; he appointed Menendez to his Senate seat after his election as Governor in 2005.

But the selection of Dr. Pinkett would mean the rejection of two women reportedly on the short list for LG: State Senators Barbara Buono (D-Metuchen) and Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck).  New Jersey Democrats have not nominated a woman for statewide office since they picked 32-year-old Thelma Parkinson to run for a two-month unexpired term in the U.S. Senate in 1930.  She lost to Republican Dwight Morrow (Charles Lindbergh's father-in-law) by a 59%-39% margin.

Since Parkinson's nomination, New Jersey Republicans have nominated a woman for statewide office five times.  GOP gubernatorial candidate Christopher Christie could make it six if he picks a woman to run for LG; reportedly, three of his four finalists are women.

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: September 12th

Stockton Poll: Christie approval rating at 53% in NJ; Obama's at 44% Gov. Chris Christie’s approval ratings in New Jersey crack 50%, while fewer voters approve of the job President Obama is doing, according to a Stockton Polling Institute poll released today. (Pizarro/PolitickerNJ) http://www.politickernj.com/81166/stockton-poll-christie-approval-rating-53-nj-obamas-44     NJ...

Op-Ed

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 >

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 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 Republican Governors Association raised $130,000 from tobacco companies during Christie’s stint as the group’s chairman, according to the most recent filings in June. The veto allows Christie to keep the peace with tobacco companies — and may very well prevent them from investing heavily in a presidential campaign for U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, whose operatives could use the cash to finance attack ads against Christie in a tight primary contest." - columnist Charles Stile

- The Bergen Record

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