Morning News Digest: December 21, 2010

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GOP women call for Patterson hearing

Three Republican Senators and an Assemblywoman called on the Senate to schedule a hearing for Anne Patterson, who was nominated by Gov. Chris Christie for the state Supreme Court earlier this year.  (Carroll, PolitickerNJ)



Eagleton: 54% voters rate Christie fair or poor

Split on his job performance, a majority of New Jerseyans rate Gov. Chris Christie only fair or poor, according to a Rutgers-Eagleton poll released today.  (Staff, PolitickerNJ)



EMBARGOED TILL 5 AM Poll: N.J. voters split on Christie’s job performance

New Jersey voters are split on how they feel about Gov. Chris Christie, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released this morning.  (Friedman, The Star-Ledger)



Christie OK with reform progress by Legislature

In September, Gov. Chris Christie threw down the gauntlet to the Democratic-controlled Legislature: Pass his sweeping reform proposals before leaving for Christmas break.  (Friedman, The Star-Ledger)



Executive director hired by Democrats

The New Jersey Democratic State Committee on Monday announced it had hired a new executive director.  (Roh, Courier-Post)



NJ senator targets ‘no-show’ Justice Rivera-Soto in fight over Christie nominee

A state senator suggested Monday that the Legislature ought to consider impeaching Associate Justice Roberto Rivera-Soto for refusing to take part in Supreme Court cases with a long-term temporary appointee.  (Symons, Daily Record)



N.J. education chief nominee Cerf: Help the have-nots

Gov. Christie’s choice to lead the state’s Education Department vowed Monday to close the “shameful achievement gap” between students born in New Jersey’s wealthy and poor areas, and reached out to teachers, calling them “spiritual guides” who make a difference in children’s lives.  (Lu, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Teachers take wait-and-see stance on Cerf

Gov. Chris Christie has nominated a reform-minded executive who once ran the nation’s largest for-profit public school management company to become New Jersey’s next education commissioner  (Delli Santi for The Associated Press)



Ratings don’t worry towns

New Jersey’s fiscal woes earned it the dubious honor of leading the nation this year in municipal bond-rating downgradings from Moody’s Investors Services, despite the state’s status as the second-wealthiest in the U.S.  (Akin, The Record)



N.J. reaches temporary deal on Meadowlands racing

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and horse owners have reached a temporary deal to keep harness racing alive at the Meadowlands through the spring, buying more time to convert from public to private the operations of the nation’s premier harness racing track.  (DeFalco for The Associated Press)



Affordable-housing bill pulled after Christie’s veto threat

Efforts to overhaul New Jersey’s controversial affordable-housing rules by the end of the year crumbled Monday when a housing bill was pulled from the Senate voting agenda hours after Gov. Christie said he would veto it if it passed without further changes.  (Rao, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Bill requires state employees to live in N.J.

New hires for public jobs would have to live in the Garden State under a bill that won final approval Monday in the state Senate.  (Friedman, The Record)



N.J. Senate approves casino district, oversight bills

With Atlantic City’s uncertain future in mind, the New Jersey Senate approved by wide margins Monday legislation that would create a state-run casino and entertainment district and loosen casino regulations.  (Parmley, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Family planning bill OK’d, sent to Christie

Thousands of working women who lack health insurance would gain access to subsidized family planning services under a bill that won final legislative passage Monday with some unexpected bipartisan support.  (Livio, The Record)



Gov. Christie nominated Passaic County freeholder to NJ Highlands Council

Gov. Chris Christie today nominated another member the New Jersey Highlands Council, but his slate still violates state law concerning the political and geographical makeup of the council.  (O’Dea, Daily Record)



Christie commutes gun sentence

Gov. Christie on Monday commuted the seven-year sentence of a New Jersey man convicted on weapons charges after guns were found in his car trunk.  (Simon, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Richard Bozza, school administrators rep, says Gov. Christie wouldn’t make it as superintendent

Gov. Chris Christie wouldn’t last a month as a school superintendent, a New Jersey Association of School Administrators official jibed Monday in charging that Christie’s proposed salary cap is both bad policy and a violation of state law.  (Jennings, Daily Record)–Christie-couldn-t-hack-it-as-schools-superintendent



New Jersey threatens to block forclosures

New Jersey courts are threatening to block six major lenders from foreclosing on most homeowners unless they can prove their process is sound.  (Fleisher, The Wall Street Journal)



From the Back Room



The resurfacing of John Lynch…

No, not that John Lynch.

New Jersey Democratic State Committee Chairman John Wisniewski today named Sean Downey as the organization’s new Executive Director.  (Staff, PolitickerNJ)






Senate duo show little consistency on Christie

What a hero Anne Patterson could be for the next generation of New Jersey girls if she ever joins the state Supreme Court.  (Stile, The Record)



Christie’s school-construction borrowing does not compute

Our governor was the star of “60 Minutes” on Sunday night. He appeared on the news show to discuss the borrowing crisis that afflicts New Jersey and many other states, and he proclaimed “The day of reckoning has arrived.”  (Mulshine, The Star-Ledger)



In 2000, (now entered the political stage, changing how New Jersey’s power elite received its daily political fix. Starting in January 2011, we’re shaking up Trenton once again. Stay tuned for State Street Wire.

  Morning News Digest: December 21, 2010