Fresh from campaigning with the 11th and 12th district Republicans on the stretch of the Garden State Parkway that runs through central Jersey, Assembly Minority Leader Leonard Lance and Alex DeCroce returned to south Jersey today to join the 1st and 2nd district legislative slates on their stretch of the road.
The point was the same they one they made earlier this week: Democrats plan to pass a bill selling the state’s toll roads during an upcoming lame duck legislative session. The Republicans also reiterated what they said in a similar press conference two months ago: that with Republican majorities in the legislatives chambers, there will be no asset monetization.
"We've said it from the beginning – the Democrats will do everything they need to do, and whatever they have to do, and anything they can get away with, to sell our roads," said a statement from state Sen. Nicholas Asselta, who’s in a hard fought battle to keep his seat against Assemblyman Jeff Van Drew.
Van Drew has frequently declared opposition to selling the state’s toll roads. But those were empty promises to the Republicans, who argued that the Democrats would do whatever Assembly Majority Leader Joe Roberts and Senate President Dick Codey want.
“Despite the fact that they voted to give the Governor a blank check to prepare to sell the toll roads, they have mouthed their meaningless words of opposition for months now,” said first district Republican Assembly candidate Mike Donohue.
Van Drew responded that he found the press conference “humorous,” since the Republicans had done almost the exact same thing two months ago.
“This is déjà vu all over again. They had the exact same press conference with the exact same players on the exact same subject almost at the exact same location ,” said Van Drew. “So I’ll do the exact same thing that I did at the last press conference and say that we do not support leasing the roads, selling the roads, increasing the tolls or creating an entity to do any of the above.”
Van Drew joked that the Republicans should have added more star power to the event.
“Maybe they should have had Rudy Giuliani come in and talk about how he wouldn’t do it in New York,” he said.