NJ Politics Digest: State Reacts to New Governor, Booker Boils Over at Senate Hearing

Phil Murphy. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The Christie era came to an end in Trenton on Tuesday, with Democrat Phil Murphy taking his place at the state’s 56th governor. The politician, known for his ever-present smile and progressive agenda, said voters had given him a mandate “to build a stronger and fairer New Jersey that works for every New Jersey family.”

Murphy’s got a lot on his plate, and in a symbolic move, the governor’s first executive order was a measure to promote equal pay for women.

While eyes in New Jersey were on Murphy, in Washington, Sen. Cory Booker was making national news with his blistering comments to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who he said should have pushed back against President Donald Trump’s reported vulgar remarks during last week’s meeting on a bipartisan immigration plan.

“The commander in chief in an Oval Office meeting referring to people from African countries and Haitians with the most vile and vulgar language, that language festers. When ignorance and bigotry is allied with power it is a dangerous force in our country. Your silence and your amnesia is complicit in it,” Booker said, according to CNN reports.

Quote of the Day: “And for those of you debating whether to stay in New Jersey or leave or perhaps are considering moving here from elsewhere, I commit to you, many years from now, when you look back, planting your flag in N.J. will be one of the smartest decisions you have ever made.” — Gov. Phil Murphy.

Phil Murphy Takes Over as New Jersey’s Governor
Phil Murphy was sworn in as the 56th governor of New Jersey on Tuesday, vowing to implement a sweeping liberal agenda to strengthen the state’s economy and resist President Trump’s policies.
Christian Hetrick, Observer Read more

Murphy’s First Executive Order Targets Gender Pay Gap
In his first official action after being sworn into office, Gov. Phil Murphy signed an executive order on Tuesday to promote equal pay for women.
Christian Hetrick, Observer Read more

Murphy Set to Take Office with the ‘Whole State’ on His Shoulders
Phil Murphy became New Jersey’s 56th governor at noon Tuesday, taking the oath of office during a ceremony inside Trenton’s War Memorial and ushering in an era of liberal values not seen in the state’s modern history.
Politico Read more

Read Phil Murphy’s Inaugural Address: Vows Fairer, Stronger N.J., Fighting Donald Trump
Here is Phil Murphy’s inaugural address, as prepared for delivery, as he was sworn in Tuesday to succeed Chris Christie as New Jersey’s governor.
NJ.com Read more

17 Things You Should Know About Phil Murphy as He Succeeds Christie as N.J. Governor
Here’s a closer look at the man who’ll succeed Republican Chris Christie.
NJ.com Read more

Meet the People Who Will Lead N.J. Under Phil Murphy (It’s a  Very Diverse Cabinet)
Gov. Phil Murphy was the center of the show Tuesday when he was sworn into office and feted with an inaugural ball at MetLife Stadium. But when it comes time to running the state, he’ll have a support squad of two dozen cabinet-level officials, overseeing everything from transportation and education to homeland security.
NJ.com Read more

Black Caucus See Murphy As Ally, Says Not So Fast To Legalizing Marijuana
With Phil Murphy taking office today, members of the legislative black caucus are confident they have an ally in the governor’s office—as opposed to the previous administration. But they say they aren’t in complete lockstep with the new governor and want him to carefully consider some of his policy initiatives.
NJSpotlight Read more

Immigrants Push Murphy on Promise of Driver’s Licenses, Regardless of Legal Status
More than 100 immigrants and allies marched in Trenton on Tuesday demanding new Gov. Phil Murphy make good on his promise to grant unauthorized immigrants access to New Jersey driver’s licenses.
Asbury Park Press Read more

Murphy’s Best One-Liners from His Inaugural Speech as Governor
Here are the best one-liners from Phil Murphy’s inauguration speech.
The Record Read more

The Scene at the War Memorial: Currie Insists He and Sweeney Are Fine, Amid the Eyes of the World
A day dawned in the State Capital on Tuesday, as the strains of the Grateful Dead swamped the seating area inside the War Memorial and insiders prepared to welcome Phil Murphy as the governor of New Jersey.
InsiderNJ Read more

Tammy Murphy Forges Her Own Path
Tammy Snyder Murphy was a political force on the campaign trail last year, both in public and in private, delivering powerful speeches, taking high-level meetings and signing off on press releases as her husband of 23 years sought to become New Jersey’s 56th governor.
Politico Read more

InsiderNJ Analysis: Murphy’s Inaugural Speech
Inaugural addresses can set the stage for “great things” to come. They also are used to espouse the philosophy of the incoming administration.
InsiderNJ Read more

Editorial: Gov. Phil Murphy Unveils Progressive Manifesto
Gubernatorial inaugural speeches are often bland, filled with little more than platitudes and calls for both parties to work together toward the common good. Even Gov. Chris Christie’s first inaugural address was vanilla, focusing broadly on the importance of unity and shared values rather than on specific proposals.
Asbury Park Press Read more

Editorial: New Jersey Strikes Back
America strikes back. That’s how Gov. Phil Murphy characterized the diversity of his Cabinet choices during his inaugural address on Tuesday.
Daily Record Read more

Editorial: Forget Christie. Murphy’s the Anti-Trump
For a state that’s tired of watching its governor stand behind President Trump like a bedraggled shadow puppet, Phil Murphy is a breath of fresh air.
Star-Ledger Read more

Editorial: Now Chris Christie Is Just a Bad Memory
If Gov. Chris Christie had patted himself on the back any harder in his farewell address to New Jersey last week, he’d have needed the ministrations of a good chiropractor. But all signs suggest that New Jerseyans cannot wait to see the door slam shut behind him when he leaves office on Tuesday after eight storm-tossed, aspersion-fueled years.
New York Times Read more

Christie Sends Farewell Tweet, and Twitter Responds: Good Riddance
One of Chris Christie’s first acts as New Jersey’s former governor came in the form of a tweet. Christie, who was officially succeeded by Phil Murphy on Tuesday around noon, took to Twitter to send a message to the Garden State residents he governed for eight years.
NJ.com Read more

Booker Blasts Trump Official for ‘Convenient Amnesia’ of President’s Vulgar Remarks
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker said he was “seething with anger” over President Donald Trump’s remarks on immigration, berating Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen for “convenient amnesia.”
NJ.com Read more

NJSPCA Is History
Legislation disbanding the New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and transferring enforcement of the state’s animal-cruelty laws to county and local law enforcement was enacted into law today, ending decades of controversy about whether the organization was doing its job.
NJSpotlight Read more

Christie, Reversing Himself, Signs Bill to Abolish Waterfront Commission
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday signed a law that would effectively abolish the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor, approving the controversial legislation less than three years after he vetoed the same measure amid concerns it violated federal law.
Politico Read more

Murphy Names Fiordaliso to BPU, Christie Pocket Vetoes Solar Bill
The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday turned out to be an eventful day for Joe Fiordaliso.
NJSpotlight Read more

New Education Boss Takes Seat in Trying Times for Schools
When Gov. Chris Christie last year called out Asbury Park schools as the poster child of ineffectiveness and waste, district superintendent Lamont Repollet didn’t bite.
NJSpotlight Read more

Offshore Drilling: Monmouth County Opposes Expansion
Monmouth County Freeholders joined a bipartisan coalition demanding the federal government drop any idea of expanding offshore oil drilling to include the Jersey Shore.
Asbury Park Press Read more

Chris Christie’s 16 Craziest Sports Moments as Governor
I found out early in his first term that, when it came to sports, this New Jersey governor was going to be different.
NJ.com Read more

Newark Man Stands Tall with Renewed Dignity after Pardon from Gov. Christie
The text message I received from Altorice Frazier on Friday evening relayed the good news he needed to jump-start 2018.
NJ.com Read more

Liberty State Park Advocates See Victory Ahead on Marina Plan
A Hudson County Superior Court judge said today he will decide by early next week whether to halt a proposed deal between New Jersey and a Texas company that would lead to a new marina on the southern end of Liberty State Park.
Jersey Journal Read more

DEP Won’t Rescind Highlands Septic Rule
The state Department of Environmental Protection is refusing to withdraw a rule involving development in the New Jersey Highlands, a proposal lawmakers recently sought to invalidate.
NJSpotlight Read more

Jersey City Has a New Method for Training Police
Jersey City has been using a pre-training routine for new police recruits, many of whom show up without any prior military or other regimented training experience. And so far, officials say, it’s been a big success.
NJ101.5 Read more

Asbury Park Sets Out on Ambitious Program to Improve Health
The teens gathered at the Boys and Girls Club in Asbury Park on a frigid Tuesday night with the mission of creating a healthy city, but to do so, they would first need to clear their minds.
Asbury Park Press Read more

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NJ Politics Digest: State Reacts to New Governor, Booker Boils Over at Senate Hearing