Wake-Up Call: Monday, October 20, 2008

Report: Most voting machines can be hacked

TRENTON – The electronic voting machines used in 18 of New Jersey's 21 counties can be hacked into in as little as seven minutes and manipulated to alter votes or fix elections, a new report by a Princeton University professor shows. (Associated Press)


Health care policy divides Lautenberg, Zimmer

U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D- N.J.) stands squarely behind Barack Obama's plan to expand health care coverage.

"There are details that have to be reviewed, but absolutely. It's affordable health care," Lautenberg said. "Obama is stepping up to the plate and saying: This is something our government is going to do." (Robert Schwaneberg, The Star-Ledger)


Reports show Lautenberg with big financial advantage over Zimmer

Republican challenger Dick Zimmer heads into the final weeks of the campaign with less than half the money available to U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), according to their latest reports to the Federal Election Commission. (Robert Schwaneberg, The Star-Ledger)


Court to decide on Bryant's fund use

As former Sen. Wayne Bryant's federal corruption trial enters its sixth week, a state appeals court tomorrow will consider whether he can tap the $640,000 in his campaign till to pay his mounting legal bills. (Susan K. Livio, The Star-Ledger)


Next up: Bryant's defense

Attorneys for Wayne Bryant are expected to begin laying out their defense Monday against charges that the once-powerful senator who served in the New Jersey Legislature for more than two decades used his clout in a scheme to boost his taxpayer-funded pension. (Trish G. Graber, Gloucester County Times)


Jackson will be Corzine's new Chief of Staff

Gov. Jon Corzine will announce today that Lisa Jackson, the state Environmental Protection Commissioner, will be his new Chief of Staff. Jackson will succeed Bradley Abelow, who will be staying on as an advisor to the Governor. (PolitickerNJ)


Shore incumbents run hard

Despite their long tenure and comfortable early leads, incumbent Republican U.S. Reps. Frank A. LoBiondo and Chris Smith aren't taking anything for granted this election. (Jacqueline L. Urgo, The Philadelphia Inquirer)


Stimulus plan gives tax credits to firms

TRENTON — New Jersey businesses would get tax credits, increased loan availability and more low-interest financing in the near future under the economic stimulus plan Gov. Jon S. Corzine outlined in a special joint legislative session last Thursday. (Gannett)


N.J. lawmakers take up homeowner protection bills

TRENTON — With the housing crisis taking center stage in the well-publicized, $700 billion bailout of financial institutions, the New Jersey Legislature will consider bills of its own to help struggling homeowners remain in their homes and protect neighborhoods from being blighted by foreclosures. (Associated Press)


Chiappone quitting Bayonne Dem group over mailing

Angry about a recent mailing by the Bayonne Democratic Organization that slams his mayoral pick, City Councilman Anthony Chiappone says he plans to quit the group and start a rival organization. (Jonathan Shapiro, Jersey Journal)


Health care common focus for Congressional hopefuls

The candidates who want to represent South Jersey in Congress acknowledge that the American health care system needs to be changed. (Jessica Coomes, Gloucester County Times)


Shulman and Garrett spar at synagogue

WOODCLIFF LAKE – At a temple on a hill overlooking the Bergen County portion of the 5th Congressional District, U.S. Rep. Scott Garrett (R-Wantage) and his challenger, Dennis Shulman, engaged in an occasionally contentious 90-minute debate focused heavily on the economy, health care, foreign policy, energy and even a little scripture. (PolitickerNJ)


2nd District congressional race Kurkowski: War has been big problem

The acknowledged best candidate for Democrats to reclaim the 2nd Congressional District is sitting out the '08 race. (Joseph P. Smith, The Daily Journal)


Pension managers collected huge fees

Hedge fund managers and other private investment specialists made $62 million last year handling a small portion of New Jersey's retirement accounts — nearly seven times what the state paid its own employees to manage a much larger basket of holdings, a new state report shows. (Dunstan McNichol, The Star-Ledger)


Seven accused of wrongly collecting unemployment

The state Attorney General's Office has charged seven South Jersey residents with collecting unemployment benefits while they had jobs. (Allison Steele, Philadelphia Inquirer)


Camden County GOP hopefuls to try again

A Republican hasn't served on the Camden County freeholder board since the last time the Phillies went to the World Series, so two perennial GOP candidates are hoping the Phillies' luck rubs off on them Nov. 4. (Matt Katz, Philadelphia Inquirer)


Morris families feel the squeeze

Larry Bebb of Wharton recently lost his job as a maintenance technician and will soon move out of state. (Matt Manochio, The Daily Record)


How groups got funding at the whim of Trenton

The document was simply titled, "Norcross Grants." Among the grants listed was money for the Lawrenceville Scholarship Program. The notation said "$100k grant approved, application will be sent out shortly." (The Star-Ledger)


Stile: Fundraising efforts continue under the radar

The Bergen County Democratic Organization may be swamped in turmoil and nearly $1 million in debt. But that hasn't stopped BCDO lieutenants from opening satellite fund-raising operations. (Charles Stile, The Bergen Record)


Democrats see ranks grow in northwest Jersey

In three of the reddest Republican counties in blue-state New Jersey, Democrats have made voter registration inroads this year, cutting into the lead of the dominant GOP, including major gains in Morris County, arguably the most im portant Republican county in the state. (The Star-Ledger)


Atlantic County swamped by registration

Atlantic County election officials say there isn't enough time to process the record number of voter registration forms that have been received, according to a report in the Press of Atlantic City. (The Star-Ledger)


Catholic voters urged to weigh abortion issue

In poll after poll, voters have consistently placed abortion far down on their list of priorities for choosing a president this fall, below issues such as the economy, the war in Iraq, terrorism, health care, energy and taxes. (Jeff Diamant, The Star-Ledger)


Debate talk focuses on taxes

It wasn't Barack Obama versus John McCain, but it had its moments.

Seven candidates from two towns in Hopewell Valley sat down to debate Wednesday night — and even tackle a question or two the presidential hopefuls are grappling over. (Jeff Trently, The Trenton Times)


Wayne receives funds for land buy

WAYNE — The township is one financial step closer to acquiring — as open space — a property where a developer has proposed a huge sports dome and recreation complex. (Andrea Alexander, The Herald News)

http://www.myheraldnews.com/view.html?type=stories&action=detail&sub_id=47768 Wake-Up Call: Monday, October 20, 2008