Webber exits in middle of war with Wisniewski over redistricting

Republican State Chairman Jay Webber resigned tonight in the middle of a redistricting warzone with Democratic State Chairman John Wisniewski.

He chuckled when PolitickerNJ.com asked if one had to do with the other.

“This headache doesn’t bother me,” he said dismissively of the spat with Wisniewski.

Both chairmen of their parties during an especially  contentious 2011 legislative redistricting process with a granite-willed GOP governor looming over the process, Wisniewski was upset that Republicans used a shadowy 5019(c)4 to help finance their redistricting prep.

And he called Webber on it in a nose to nose encounter.

“Our position is redistricting is a public process that should be funded publicly,” said Wisniewski, who days after similarly stealthy 501(c)4 Reform Jersey Now under public pressure coughed up their donor list added, “There’s a pattern here with secret organizational funding. …These are the guys who came to town beating their chests about transparency.”

Webber bristled.

“John fixated on the 501(c)4 and my only point to him was if you think it’s such an advantageous thing, you could have done it yourself,” said Webber.

Wisniewski admitted using a private fundraising arm isn’t illegal.

“But it should be,” he said.

After putting their redistricting teams in place the two chairmen squabbled over hearing dates. The Democrat supplied the Republican with two dates, according to Webber – Jan. 18th and 29th.

“I told him ‘that’s not good enough, we want to start sooner,'” said the Republican chair.

Wisniewski got to the point where the entire process seemed doomed.

“Jay Webber sent out a letter setting up dates for public hearings and he never consulted me,” said the Dem chairman. “There are no dates we have mutually agreed upon. Maybe this indicates there’s an impasse and we should go right to the tiebreaker.”

Moments after publicly resigning and declaring satisfaction with his work product as party chairman, Webber said it was unfortunate Wisniewski felt overburdened.

“Turmoil in the Republican Party,” said Wisniewski, when asked about Webber’s exit.
Webber exits in middle of war with Wisniewski over redistricting