Reality TV star Randal Pinkett told the Associated Press this morning that he would consider running for Lt. Governor if Gov. Jon Corzine asks him to join the ticket, but said his meeting with the governor has not led to an offer yet.
A group of civic, academic and religious leaders, some very close to Corzine, submitted an op-ed to the Star-Ledger today endorsing Pinkett for the job – and slapping the state's largest newspaper for dismissing Pinkett's candidacy so quickly. The letter was submitted by former PSE&G CEO Alfred Koeppe and the Rev. M. William Howard, and said it represented the views of former Corzine Deputy Chief of Staff Jeannine LaRue, Rutgers Professors Carl Van Horn, the Rev. Reginald Jackson, former Secretary of State DeForest "Buster" Soaries, Newark leader Clement Price, and Richard Roper, the Planning Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
Conventional wisdom is that Pinkett would not speak publicly about his interest in running for LG until after Corzine made his pick. But maybe the selection process is one big reality show, and Pinkett will use the forum to show Democratic leaders what kind of candidate he would make. If he takes that kind of gamble and wins, it might give Corzine the cover to select him.
The smart money is still on two Democratic State Senators, Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck) and Barbara Buono (D-Metuchen).