Morning News Digest: April 12, 2010

Former N.J. Congressman Bob Franks dies

Bob Franks — the popular and high-spirited former Union County Republican congressman who nearly defeated millionaire newcomer Democrat Jon S. Corzine with a disciplined campaign for the U.S. Senate in 2000 — died Friday night in New York. He was 58.  (Stile, The Record)

Gov. Chris Christie pushes powerful NJEA teachers union into corner

Some of the state’s more powerful leaders have privately complained for years about the power of the state’s teachers union. Yet virtually none would voice those issues in public or even respond to reporters’ questions. (Method, Asbury Park Press)

Tea Party searches for right blend in New Jersey

On a cool spring night, 11 people inside the IHOP restaurant in Keyport rose to recite the Pledge of Allegiance while facing an American flag in the corner. Then they sat back down on the faux leather seats and, over pancakes and coffee, began to plan the Tea Party’s rise in New Jersey politics. (Megarian/Friedman, The Record)

Gov. Chris Christie pits teachers against one another with wage freeze offer

When the Hackettstown School District presented its $28.5 million 2010-11 budget April 1, the document lacked 18 full-time positions — seven of them classroom teachers — who are working this year. (Novak, Express Times)

‘Bob Franks wrote a chapter in my life called politics’

In coming close to defeating Jon Corzine in 2000 but finally losing, Bob Franks inspired a close circle of friends and advisors, who would go on to achieve in politics their own successes that ultimately became part of Mr. Franks’s legacy.  (Pizarro,

Republican Groff announces bid for Atlantic City Council

“The city’s just driving me nuts, but I refuse to leave,” said Keith Groff, the newest City Council candidate. “Somebody’s got to do something.”  (Campbell, Press of Atlantic City)

Camden County Jail population steadily declines

The number of inmates housed at the Camden County Jail has decreased steadily over the last year, as the county criminal justice system continues to streamline its court operations. (Osborne, Philadelphia Inquirer) Morning News Digest: April 12, 2010