Morning News Digest: October 15, 2010

Follow PolitickerNJ on Twitter and Facebook      Holt and Sipprelle square off The first debate between candidates for the 12th Congressional district

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Holt and Sipprelle square off

The first debate between candidates for the 12th Congressional district showcased the stark differences – and even some bad blood – between the two men vying for the nod from the people come Nov. 2.  (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ)



Lautenberg: ‘Christie has to pick up his responsibility’

NEWARK – Buying some time until he can line up a louder labor rally, U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-Cliffside Park) in his ongoing disagreement with Gov. Chris Christie today created a headline with the Regional Plan Association (RPA), which went into hurry mode to release their study on the Access to the Region’s Core (ARC) tunnel.  (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)



Public unions step up spending

Public-sector unions have remained a bulwark for Democrats this fall while other left-leaning donors have kept their wallets shut, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of Federal Election Commission data.  (Yardon, The Wall Street Journal)



Democrats’ primary turnout lowest on record

Fueled by tea party activism and hotly contested races, Republican participation in this year’s primary elections was up. But Democratic participation fell to a record low, leaving overall voter turnout at the second lowest level ever for a midterm election, an analysis by American University’s Center for the Study of the American Electorate concludes.  (Radnofsky, The Wall Street Journal)



Young voters pose skeptical questions to Obama

(Reuters) – President Barack Obama faced some skeptical questions from young people and defended his policies, from job creation to immigration, on Thursday in an effort to rev up Democratic voter enthusiasm for the November 2 midterm elections.  (Zengerle, Reuters)



Democratic funding fades

WASHINGTON—A late effort by Democrats to match record fund raising by conservative organizations has come up short, leaving the party more reliant than usual on the campaign efforts of labor unions.  (Mullins and Yardon, The Wall Street Journal)



Dems push cost of living fix for seniors

The House in November will vote on providing seniors with a $250 check in place of a cost of living adjustment for Social Security.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced that she has asked the Ways and Means committee to bring Rep. Earl Pomeroy’s (D-N.D.) Seniors Protection Act to the floor during the lame duck session of Congress after the election.  (Sherman, Politico)



NJ Assembly to vote on controversial job bills

TRENTON — Companies are generally free to hire whomever they want, unless the selection process violates discrimination laws. But there’s nothing on the books forcing companies to consider the jobless or even to accept applications from them.  (Jordan, Courier News)



N.J. lawmakers study 2% cap on raises for public workers

TRENTON – Senators heard testimony Thursday on a controversial bill that would impose a 2 percent cap on annual increases in the total cost of a public employee’s salary and benefits.  (Lu, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Connecticut GOP push for N.J. Gov. Christie to take on role as presidential contender

GREENWICH, Conn. — Blowing into town to campaign for Connecticut’s Republican gubernatorial candidate, Gov. Chris Christie was once again treated like a rock star who could wind up playing Washington.  (Megerian, The Star-Ledger)



Tea Party set to win enough races for wide influence

Enough Tea Party-supported candidates are running strongly in competitive and Republican-leaning Congressional races that the movement stands a good chance of establishing a sizeable caucus to push its agenda in the House and the Senate, according to a New York Times analysis.  (Zernike, The New York Times)



Bill introduced to save NJSIAA

Sen. Richard Codey, D-Essex, introduced a bill in the state Senate Thursday in an effort to keep the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association intact.  (Biggy, Daily Record)



Politicians ask for end of Cablevision-Fox fee dispute

With another cable blackout on the horizon, local politicians yesterday asked executives of Cablevision and Fox to end their feud over network fees.  (Duffy, The Times of Trenton)



From the Back Room



Open the pod bay doors Hal

Gov. Chris Christie may want to loosen up the internet policy at the statehouse or at least change the security message to one less ironic.  (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ)






A bad plan doesn’t get better with time

THERE’S A SAYING that everything old is new again. Maybe that’s the mantra at U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg’s office. On Thursday, it was heralding a new report on the benefits of the Access to the Region’s Core tunnel – you know the one-seat ride to Macy’s that is going to speed commutes, increase New Jersey property values and take two inches off your waistline without exercise.  (Doblin, The Record)



Reveal secret donations that benefit the governor

It’s no secret that there’s too much money in politics. In recent years, voters could take solace in knowing that most of this money was traceable. We may not have been able to turn off the spigot, but at least we knew where the water was coming from. Not this year.  (Sen. Barbara Buono, guest columnist for The Star-Ledger)



Scutari unhappy over pot delay

Sen. Nick Scutari, who sponsored New Jersey’s medical marijuana law, says he will repeal the rules the Christie administration have come up with to administrate it. He says they made it too hard for people who need help. Gov. Corzine signed the bill into law before Christie took over.  (Ingle, Asbury Park Press)



‘Low turnout’ talk may make it true

In campaign coverage, the “enthusiasm gap” is central to political debate, making headlines across the country. But political strategists and the media should take heed.  (Rogers and Schwartz, Politico)



Newark needs more than Facebook reform

Newark captured the nation’s attention with the recent pep rally on “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” starring Governor Chris Christie, Mayor Corey Booker, and newly-minted Facebook billionaire Mark Zuckerberg.  (Macinnes, NJ Spotlight) Morning News Digest: October 15, 2010