Morning News Digest: August 9, 2010

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Winners and Losers: Week of August 2

A slow week in Trenton but nevertheless an exciting one for winners and losers.  Our list this week runs the gamut from federal to local government and even includes some members of the 4th estate, who stood their ground against the tyranny of the state…well, against a sunglasses wearing city cop anyway. (PolitickerNJ, Editor)

http://www.politickernj.com/winners-and-losers-week-august-2

Sweeney on sunshine: Nothing to see here

State Sen. President Stephen Sweeney (D-Gloucester) was at the gaming summit in Atlantic City today, and he criticized the Republican administration for their secretive handling of the Hanson Report.

But Sweeney himself is being accused of secret voting and closed-door deliberations as chairman of the Gloucester County Freeholders. (PolitickerNJ, Carroll)

http://www.politickernj.com/sweeney-sunshine-nothing-see-here

State: Passaic Sheriff Speziale’s hiring of investigators exceeds quota

Passaic County Sheriff Jerry Speziale has far exceeded his quota of patronage appointments, according to the state Civil Service Commission, but is legally challenging that assessment and a consequent order to fire eight so-called sheriff’s investigators.

http://www.northjersey.com/news/100209669_State_accuses_Speziale_of_too_much_patronage_hiring.html

Could sports betting save New Jersey?

We’ll call him “Charlie” because we don’t want our legs broken. Charlie is a longtime bookie in New Jersey. And he, for one, knows what the legalization of sports betting here would mean for him. (Considine, The Star Ledger)

http://www.nj.com/insidejersey/index.ssf/2010/08/can_sports_betting_save_new_je.html

Gulf Coast oil spill sparks debate in N.J. elections

It’s about 1,300 miles from Belmar to Biloxi, but the issue of off-shore drilling in the wake of the Gulf oil disaster has spilled into the political campaigns in New Jersey’s coastal congressional districts. (Friedman, The Star Ledger)

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2010/08/bp_oil_spill_sets_off_debate_i.html

Seeking tourists, states try to recast their image

PORT HURON, Mich. — This state’s tourism ads make people feel good enough to cry. They give hope to the jobless and goose bumps to the jaded. Daily they win new fans on Facebook, new followers on Twitter. When they come on the radio, they inspire listeners to turn up the volume. (Hampson, USA TODAY)

http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2010-08-09-1Astateimage09_CV_N.htm

Mack: A month of progress, missteps

TRENTON – Mayor Tony Mack pledged at his inauguration just over a month ago that he would create a “new Trenton,” with cleaner streets, a more transparent administration and a new relationship with the state government. (Rinde, The Times of Trenton)

http://www.nj.com/mercer/index.ssf/2010/08/mack_a_month_of_progress_misst.html

The tea party’s growing money problem

Some leading tea party activists are concerned that their efforts to reshape American politics, starting with the 2010 elections, are being undermined by a shortage of cash that’s partly the result of a deep ambivalence within the movement’s grassroots over the very idea of fundraising, and partly attributable to an inability to win over the wealthy donors who fund the conservative establishment.  (Vogel, Politico)

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0810/40800.html

Will your tax bill skyrocket on Jan. 1?

Federal taxes will explode on Jan. 1. Unless Congress acts, people in the lowest bracket face a 50 percent increase. Top earners would owe tens of thousands more than they did this year. (Jackson, The Record)

http://www.northjersey.com/news/100209794_Will_your_tax_bill_skyrocket_on_Jan__1_.html

From the Back Room

A tale of two Democrats

Possible Democratic gubernatorial candidates in 2013, recognizing Christie’s overwhelming victory at the jersey shore, looked to make inroads in the shore county this weekend. (Editor, PolitickerNJ)

http://www.politickernj.com/back_room/tale-two-democrats

 

Opinion…

N.J. has pension obligations it must fulfill, too

t seems no sooner was the ink dry on this year’s $29.4 billion budget than the Christie administration was considering how to close next year’s projected multibillion-dollar budget deficit. (Editorial, The Daily Journal)

http://www.thedailyjournal.com/article/20100809/OPINION01/8090338

Politi: Gov. Christie steps right to the top of the state’s sports movers and shakers

Here’s the great thing about juice: It’s fluid.
Nearly half the entries on the second “Juice List,” our annual compilation of the most influential people in New Jersey sports, are newcomers — a sign that the ever-changing sports landscape in the state is more volatile than you may think. (Politi, The Star Ledger)

http://www.nj.com/sports/index.ssf/2010/08/politi_gov_christie_steps_righ.html

Doblin: A new civil war and the 14th Amendment

THE 14th Amendment is fighting for its life. Xenophobes want to get rid of the part that allows for birthright citizenship. Homophobes will soon take up the cause as well. U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn Walker, who ruled last week that California’s Proposition 8 was unconstitutional, said it violated the due process clause of the 14th Amendment. (Doblin, The Record)

http://www.northjersey.com/news/opinions/doblin/100242034_A_new_civil_war_and_the_14th_Amendment.html

Another crooked pol goes to jail

In the span of one year, Peter Cammarano has gone from mayor and rising star in
Democratic Party circles to federal convict. (Editorial, Daily Record)

http://www.dailyrecord.com/article/20100809/OPINION01/100806071/1005/news01/Another+crooked+pol+goes+to+jail+

Hard to take game-playing pols seriously

If New Jersey horse racing and casinos have a prayer of being preserved, gaming first has to get past games played by politicians who appear adult on the outside but act like kids in a sandbox. (Ingle, APP)

http://www.app.com/article/20100808/OPINION05/8080321/1093/Hard-to-take-game-playing-pols-seriously