Morning News Digest: July 28, 2010

Follow PolitickerNJ updates on Twitter and on Facebook Lance dings Geithner ahead of Prez visit to Edison Coming here to

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Lance dings Geithner ahead of Prez visit to Edison

Coming here to Edison is fine, but put some distance on those weekend remarks of Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, U.S. Rep. Leonard Lance (R-Lebanon) told President Barack Obama in a letter he fired off to the White House this afternoon. A day before Obama’s drop-in to a town cut in half by the 6th and 7th Congressional districts, Lance called on the Democratic chief executive to back bench Geithner. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ) 

Edison mayor set to receive President 

A year ago, President Barack Obama packed PNC Bank Center with fans and used the flailing candidacy of then-Gov. Jon Corzine as a hardly insurmountable backdrop for the more pressing national issue of healthcare. This time, Corzine’s gone, and nobody seems to know if his Republican successor will attend the Edison blue collar sub shop stop where Obama is scheduled to talk about the economy. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)

 NJEA: Christie no champion of education 

The relationship between the state teachers’ union and the governor has deteriorated to such an extent that news that both sides agree is good becomes a political spitting contest. In her latest release New Jersey Education Association Barbara Keshishian accuses Gov. Chris Christie of playing politics with the announcement that New Jersey is a finalist in the federal Race to the Top education grant program. (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ) 

Rothman: ‘Prez was handed difficult challenges’

 He was the northeast coordinator for the campaign of Barack Obama, the one member of the New Jersey delegation who cut one way when everyone else went the other – and when it was over, U.S. Rep. Steve Rothman (D-Fairlawn) stood at the front of the line with the winner. In session tomorrow with his colleagues, Rothman won’t make a break for Edison, where Obama, with the honeymoon gloss off, has picked the Tastee Sub Shop as a decidedly humbler haunt than last year’s PNC Bank Center and Prudential Center for his Jersey drop-in. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ) 

State Sen. Sarlo: More specific solutions needed on Meadowlands in gaming report

 The state Senate’s budget committee will not consider recommendations on the Atlantic City casino industry until a governor-appointed commission on gaming, sports and entertainment offers more specific solutions for the future of the Meadowlands, according to Sen. Paul Sarlo, the budget committee chairman. (Gartland, The Record)  

Christie: NJ can’t afford homebuyer program 

A Red Bank-based homebuilder says it’s disappointed over Gov. Chris Christie’s veto of legislation that would have granted a tax credit of up $15,000 to people who buy a home this year. K. Hovnanian Homes, the state’s largest homebuilder, was a proponent of the New Jersey Homebuyer Tax Credit. It would have allowed for tax credits of up to $15,000, or 5 percent of the home purchase price, whichever is less, for buyers of new or existing homes. (Wilis, Gannett) 

President Obama visit to Edison comes as businesses struggle in dour economy

 President Barack Obama will discuss the national economy during a Wednesday visit to New Jersey, a state whose own economy is struggling to achieve sustained growth. Obama will visit the Tastee Sub Shop in Edison where he will participate in a roundtable discussion about how small businesses can thrive, the White House said. (Chebium, Gannett)

 Rangel, ethics panel lawyers talking settlement 

 New York Democrat Charles Rangel made a last-minute effort Tuesday to settle his ethics case and prevent a House trial that could embarrass him and damage the Democratic Party. The talks between Rangel’s lawyer and the House ethics committee’s nonpartisan attorneys were confirmed by ethics Chairman Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif. Lofgren said she is not involved in the talks, and added that the committee’s lawmakers have always accepted the professional staff’s recommendations in previous plea bargains. (AP) 

Big war boost clears Congress, despite Afghan leak

 The House on Tuesday sent President Barack Obama a major war-funding increase of $33 billion to pay for his troop surge in Afghanistan, unmoved by the leaking of classified documents that portray a military effort struggling between 2004 and 2009 against a strengthening insurgency. The House voted, 308-114, to approve the spending boost for the additional 30,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Other non-war provisions brought the total bill to nearly $59 billion. (AP) 

Shore officials happy about Christie plans for Atlantic City

 Turn Atlantic City – the gaming town – into a more family-oriented resort destination. Create a tourism district to help make it cleaner and safer. And expand the Boardwalk with businesses like those at Ocean City, Wildwood, and Cape May. Officials in southern Shore towns have carefully studied Gov. Christie’s proposals over the last few days, and, far from being threatened by future competition, they’re buoyed by news of the state’s involvement. (Colimore, Inquirer) 

 N.J. gay-marriage case must begin in lower courts 

The push for gay marriage in New Jersey suffered a setback Monday when the state Supreme Court said six gay couples who claim New Jersey has denied them the rights granted to married heterosexual couples must argue their case through the lower courts. The court was split 3-3 in the decision; four affirmative votes are needed for a motion to be granted. (Lu, Inquirer) 

 From the Back Room.. 

Christie scores invite to Prez visit 

Gov. Chris Christie will be attending the arrival ceremony for President Obama tomorrow afternoon. The Gov.’s invite clears up the outstanding question of whether the president would snub the governor, who has made few friends on the left with his take no prisoners style. According to the governor’s schedule, he will meet Obama at the airport for a 12:50 arrival ceremony. Newark Mayor Cory Booker also is scheduled to attend. (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ) 

Lance’s letter to Obama 

Below is the text of U.S. Rep. Leonard Lance’s (R-Lebanon) Tuesday afternoon letter to President Barack Obama, who is slated to visit Edison tomorrow. “Welcome to Edison, New Jersey – the birthplace of the technological revolution. It is an honor to have you visiting the Garden State to discuss the important issue of job creation.” (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ) 


 Stile: Like ‘Jersey Shore,’ Christie packs a punch 

About the only ones getting under Governor Christie’s skin these days — other than teacher union bosses — are a yawping 4-foot-9-inch puffball and her extreme hair-gelled housemates who spend half their lives plunged half-naked in hot tubs. “Negative for New Jersey,’’ Christie told ABC-TV’s Jake Tapper on Sunday when asked about MTV’s “Jersey Shore.” “I mean … what it does is it takes a bunch … of New Yorkers, drops them at the Jersey Shore, and tries to make America feel like this is New Jersey.” (Stile, The Record) 

Ingle: Is mysterious third man a shill for Adler?

 First-term Democratic Congressman John Adler, whose district elected Republicans from 1884 to 2008, has some company in the fall race against Republican Jon Runyan. It smells like political chicanery and looks like a sign of Adler’s desperation. (Ingle, Gannett)

 Ingle: Crime fighters cleared of ethics charges

Two men who did their best to clean up New Jersey corruption have been cleared of any wrongdoing in connection with comments in a press conference after the gang of 44 was arrested last summer. An anonymous ethics complaint was made against then-acting U.S. Attorney Ralph Marra Jr. and Weysan Dun, then head of the FBI in Newark. Somebody didn’t have the guts to stand behind their own complaints. The Corzine campaign charged that the comments by Marra were an attempt to boost Chris Christie’s gubernatorial chances. (Ingle, Gannett)

 Riordan: ‘Mad Men,’ starring the DRPA 

New episodes of Mad Men are enlivening Sunday nights, offering fans (like me) a glimpse of a way of doing business that’s as retro as black-and-white TV. Or maybe not. Consider the Delaware River Port Authority, which operates four bridges, a commuter railroad and an executive suite where the culture is old-school enough to fit the hit AMC show. (Riordan, Inquirer)

Morning News Digest: July 28, 2010