Webber backs Christie in fight against state Supreme Court, schools funding

TRENTON – As other Assembly members debated about a possible budget crisis if the state Supreme Court orders the state

TRENTON – As other Assembly members debated about a possible budget crisis if the state Supreme Court orders the state to pay more money for at-risk public schools, Assemblyman Jay Webber, (R-26), of Morris Plains, said the state is already facing a constitutional crisis as the state Senate had failed, until recently, to agree to have confirmation hearings on Gov. Chris Christie’s Supreme Court appointee Anne Patterson.

“In my view, the failure for the state Senate to fulfill its constitutional obligation caused a constitutional crisis in our state.”

Regarding Christie’s comment about possibly not following a potential Supreme Court ruling that would order him to provide more funds for at-risk school districts, Webber said he theoretically has the right to defend himself, based on Article 3, Section 1 of the state Constitution.

He read Article 3, Section 1, at the dais, which states that “No person or persons belonging to or constituting one branch shall exercise any of the powers properly belonging to either of the others, except as expressly provided in this Constitution.”

Attorney General Paula Dow said, upon a question from Webber during Thursday’s Budget Committee hearing, that the Supreme Court does not have a police.

“I just wanted to clarify that thought,”  he said.

Assemblyman Lou Greenwald, (D-6), of Voorhees,  disagreed that the Senate was violating any rules by not holding a hearing on Patterson, adding that he was approached to have a hearing on Patterson, even though the Assembly does not hold such hearings.   Webber backs Christie in fight against state Supreme Court, schools funding