Sheila Oliver (D-East Orange), a three-term Assemblywoman from Essex County, has the votes to become the next Assembly Speaker - the third most powerful position in state government. She has a hard count of 34 (assuming all of the Democrats supporting her win in November), and a soft count of 36. Oliver is positioned to become the first woman Assembly Speaker since 1965, the first from Essex County since 1973, and the first African American since 1975.
Late this afternoon, Oliver emerged with one significant endorsement: Linda Greenstein (D-Plainsboro). Greenstein, a close political ally of Oliver's rival, Majority Leader Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-Ewing), had professed her official neutrality as recently as 3:30 PM today. Expect Watson Coleman, who has no endorsements outside her own district, to drop out the race.
Also, expect Greenstein's running mate, Wayne DeAngelo (D-Hamilton), to endorse Oliver soon. DeAngelo had held back his endorsement at the request of Mercer County Democratic leaders, who were backing their home county candidate.
Democratic sources say that Greenstein went with Oliver to save her post as Assembly Judiciary Committee Chair. She would have certainly lost that job had she not gone with Oliver, but her relatively late endorsement does not guarantee her the chairmanship. Sources say that Peter Barnes (D-Edison), a lawyer and the brother of the Hunterdon County Prosecutor, is also in contention to chair the panel.
Definite Oliver (34)
Burlington (1): Herbert Conaway
Camden (6): Bill Collins, Jack Conners, Angel Fuentes, Louis Greenwald, Pamela Lampitt, Donald Norcross
Cumberland (3): Nelson Albano, Matthew Milam, Celeste Riley
Essex (9): Ralph Caputo, Albert Coutinho, Thomas Giblin, John McKeon, Mila Jasey, Sheila Oliver, Fred Scalera, Grace Spencer, Cleopatra Tucker
Gloucester (2): John Burzichelli, Paul Moriarty
Hudson (2): Ruben Ramos, Caridad Rodriguez
Middlesex (6): Peter Barnes, Craig Coughlin, Patrick Diegnan, Joseph Egan, Linda Greenstein, John Wisniewski
Somerset: (1) Upendra Chivukula
Union (4): Joseph Cryan, Gerald Green, Annette Quijano, Linda Stender
Likely Oliver (1)
Hudson (1): Charles Mainor
Leans Oliver (1)
Passaic (1): Gary Schaer
Definite Watson Coleman (2)
Mercer (2): Reed Gusciora, Bonnie Watson Coleman
While describing to fellow Republicans a conversation he said he had with Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, Gov. Chris Christie borrowed a self-attribution from his old pal George W. Bush.Read More >
Winners and Losers: Week of July 21st Christopher Rodriguez Governor Chris Christie this week announced his selection of the CIA operative as New Jersey’s next Director of the Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (OHSP). (Politicker Staff) http://www.politickernj.com/77941/winners-and-losers-week-july-21st Torres saddles up with Fulop and Baraka for...
By Michael Capelli As a 30 year union carpenter, I learned first-hand how important it was to have the right tools for the job. Now as the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the 30,000 men and women of the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters I... Read More >
"A pain management surgeon, Roque said he estimates that the trial and initial loss of patients and other headaches may have personally cost him about $800,000. Ouch." - columnist Agustin Torres, the Political Insider- The Jersey Journal
Press releases are submitted by PolitickerNJ users, not by staff. They do not represent the viewpoint of PolitickerNJ.com.