Morning News Digest: Nov. 8, 2012

Third-quarter median home prices grow in metro areas

The day after the election brought some good news regarding home prices.

The National Association of Realtors reported Wednesday that metropolitan-area median prices grew in the third quarter. (State Street Wire)


Winners and losers: Post election day edition

As we began to compile our extensive list of Winners and Losers, one question dogged us:  What to do with Gov. Chris Christie?

His candidate for president lost, and he turned the ire of some of the party faithful by cozying up closely to President Obama, providing the Dmeocratic incumbent with a one on one photo op denied his republican challenger.

But few believed a Mitt Romney victory would do Christie much good anyway. If Christie has designs on the 2016 presidency, Romney’s loss positions the New Jersey governor to return to the good graces of Republicans irritated with him for embracing President Barack Obama during Hurricane Sandy. (Politicker staff)



Christie scorecard

TRENTON – Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney lost his bid for the White House, but it wasn’t because a lack of campaign efforts on behalf of Gov. Chris Christie, the administration argued Wednesday.

The governor told reporters a day after Election Day that he worked hard to get the former Massachusetts governor to the White House, saying he was “extraordinarily disappointed” when it became clear that President Barack Obama clinched a second term. (Arco, PolitickerNJ)

Update: Corfield awaiting absentee ballot results

In the closely watched LD 16 contest, Assemblywoman Donna Simon (R-16) leads Democratic challenger Marie Corfield by 712 votes.

That’s without absentee ballots.

Asked if Corfield is still refusing to concede, Somerset County Vice Chairman Zenon Christodoulou said, “yes,, for good reason, we think. Democrats did very well in her Somerset towns.” (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)


Back to the future: Clinton vs. Bush in 2016?

BOSTON — American politics may be headed back to the future.

Four years after the country elected a 40-something African-American newcomer named Barack to the presidency, a more familiar political order is poised to reassert itself: the House of Clinton representing Democrats and the House of Bush atop the GOP.

The restoration of either is no sure thing, but what’s certain is that Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush loom the largest over their respective parties as the long road toward 2016 begins. Any other would-be presidential candidate will first take a long look toward Chappaqua and Miami before moving forward. (Martin/Haberman, Politico)



Republicans ponder painful way forward

Republicans found themselves gazing into an electoral abyss Wednesday, registering the full impact of a 2012 election that exposed crippling weaknesses in the party’s political infrastructure and demographic appeal.

The takeaway among party leaders was virtually unanimous: The GOP faces a years-long challenge of reaching out to Americans beyond its predominantly white, male base and updating a voter turnout machine that’s woefully out of date. (Burns/Martin, Politico)


N.J. sees record low turnout in wake of Sandy

A week after clawing its way across New Jersey, Hurricane Sandy appeared to make yet another mark in the history books: About 60 percent of registered voters cast a ballot for president Tuesday, the lowest turnout in the state’s history.

With 99 percent of election districts reporting, 3,319,684 New Jerseyans voted in the race for the White House. That’s a shade over 60 percent of the nearly 5.5 million registered voters, far below the record low for a presidential year — 70 percent set in 2000, when George W. Bush ran against Vice President Al Gore. (Baxter, Star-Ledger)


Obama, Congress seek compromise to avoid spending cuts, tax hikes

One day after a bruising, mixed-verdict election, President Barack Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner both pledged Wednesday to seek a compromise to avert looming spending cuts and tax increases that threaten to plunge the economy back into recession.

Added Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.: “Of course” an agreement is possible.

While all three men spoke in general terms, Boehner stressed that Republicans would be willing to accept higher tax revenue under the right conditions as part of a more sweeping attempt to reduce deficits and restore the economy to full health. (Associated Press)


After election day NYC Republican pols retreat deeper into Staten Island

With last night’s elections, a number of seats changed hands between the Democratic and Republican parties across New York State, and indeed the entire country. But in the five boroughs of New York City, it was a one-way street.

At the congressional level, for example, the city lost half its Republican representation with the exit of Queens’ Bob Turner, who unsuccessfully ran for his party’s nomination for the U.S. Senate. GOP Councilman Dan Halloran had his sights on the remnants of Mr. Turner’s district in northeastern part of the borough, but the area’s solidly Democratic tendencies allowed Assemblywoman Grace Meng to easily leap over Mr. Halloran and secure a new gig in Washington D.C. (PolitickerNY)


Big win, bigger challenges for Obama

President Obama on Wednesday began to tackle a host of issues, some forced on him and others that will begin to mark out his second-term ambitions, after a campaign season that effectively froze much of Washington’s work for months.

Obama faces a worsening civil war in Syria now spilling its borders, a year-end fiscal showdown with a Congress largely unchanged by the recent election and his own second-term staffing issues inside the White House and at key Cabinet agencies.

The ratification that Obama received Tuesday with his decisive electoral win over Mitt Romney is already being challenged by Republican congressional leaders, who warned that the victory should not be viewed as a broad mandate for tax rate increases for wealthy Americans and other issues that Obama successfully campaigned on. (Wilson/Nakamura, Washington Post)



Can Christie win back GOP favor?

In the first few days after Sandy slammed into New Jersey, Governor Christie said he had neither the time nor the patience to talk about politics. With thousands suddenly homeless and millions huddled in the dark without power, it wasn’t even a blip on his radar screen.

But after touring devastated Long Beach Island on Wednesday, Christie took time to express his sympathy for Mitt Romney’s loss to President Obama.

“I’ve lost elections and I know how it feels and it hurts, and I’ve never run for president, so I can’t imagine putting in the kind of effort that Governor Romney has put in over the years to run for president and how badly it hurts this morning for him to have come up short,” said Christie, who had been – until the storm — one of Romney’s most visible and sought-after surrogates. (Stile, Bergen Record)


Christie says he didn’t cost Romney election

The leading man of what perhaps was the presidential campaign’s most intriguing subplot stepped into public view the morning after the election wearing a now-trademark blue fleece and warning of an approaching nor’easter.

With an epic storm having crippled part of his state and another on the way, Gov. Christie was still in disaster mode Wednesday morning, allowing him to easily deflect the many questions that circulated after fellow Republican Mitt Romney lost his bid for the presidency.

Was he responsible for Romney’s loss after he buddied up with President Obama last week? No. Was he running for president in 2016? He loves his job now. And what about reelection next year? (Katz, Philadelphia Inquirer)



Attention turns to distribution network for gasoline as shortages persist

Peter Lanci spent two days trying to find gasoline in Nassau County, on Long Island, driving by nine closed gas stations and finding only one that was open — with about 150 cars waiting in line.

But on Wednesday, Mr. Lanci, an accountant, decided to try his luck 25 miles away in neighboring Suffolk County. He was able to fill up his tank, and two gas containers, all in just 25 minutes.

Even as the gas shortage gripping the New York region has eased, relief has not come equally to everyone. Drivers like Mr. Lanci have found to their frustration that shuttered pumps and long lines persist in New York City and Nassau County, while they have dwindled in much of New Jersey, Suffolk and New York north of the city. (Hu, New York Times)


Weighing sea barriers as protection for New York

As the storm chugged toward the Eastern Seaboard at 3 p.m. on Oct. 27, an engineering crew in Stamford, Conn., was at the ready. It was time.

With the click of a computer mouse, machinery on the seafloor groaned into action and a gate was slowly pulled from the deep, locking into place high above the surge from Long Island Sound. (Navarro, New York Times)


Christie warns storm could set back recovery

With a snowstorm and high tides bearing down, Gov. Chris Christie praised New Jerseyans’ work to recover from Hurricane Sandy but warned there could setbacks, especially a return to blackouts if wet snow and high winds do their worst.

“I can see us moving backward, and people who had power losing power again,” Christie said Wednesday at a midday news conference in Harvey Cedars, surrounded by firefighters, police and National Guard soldiers. But there are now 11,000 utility workers in New Jersey, “and we’re not letting them go anywhere, we’re treating them real good,” Christie said.

“The weather is what it is, and we have to deal with it,” he said. (Moore, Asbury Park Press)|newswell|text|Frontpage|s


With another storm, airlines take no chances

Major airlines scrapped flights in and out of the New York area Wednesday as the region was socked with the second significant storm in little more than a week.

United and American suspended operations in the region by afternoon, as white-out conditions developed. Other airlines have cancelled flights too. All are encouraging passengers to reschedule are allowing them to do it for free. (Bomkamp, Associated Press) Morning News Digest: Nov. 8, 2012