Winners and Losers: McClellan’s Revenge


Rick Wright

Retiring as executive director of the Assembly Republicans, Wright is retiring before the June Primary. In the words of one Republican insider, after 25 years of public service, Wright “deserves credit as one of the guys who kept the party going during the lean years between Whitman and Christie. He never gave up the fight and doesn’t get enough credit for it.”

Mark Duffy

The current deputy executive director of the Assembly Republicans will take over the top spot when Wright departs. A veteran GOP operative, Duffy has universal respect in his party.

Chris Christie

Revel is going bankrupt, the economy sucks, and his treasurer is receiving a subpoena courtesy of the Assembly Budget Committee, but Christie has a 74% job approval rating, and this week gnawed away another Democrat when Sea Bright Mayor Dina Long formally backed his re-election. At the Essex County State of the County event this week, Christie played Springsteen to Joe DiVincenzo’s Nils Lofgren in a roomful of Democrats.

Kevin O’Toole

The state senator from LD 40 held his annual fundraiser in his hometown of Cedar Grove and literally stopped traffic for over a mile as people pulled into Il Tulipano. Christie joined O’Toole at the podium, helping to raise over $200K for the governor’s key legislative ally.

Peter Barnes

The LD 18 pol will receive the formal backing of the Middlesex County Democratic Organization next month to succeed state Sen. Barbara Buono (D-18), who is running for governor.

Cory Booker

New Jersey voters give the Newark mayor a 59 – 11 percent favorability rating, including 47 – 24 percent among Republicans, according to this week’s Quinnipiac Poll.

Jerry Healy

The mayor had a successful kickoff last Saturday and showed the advantage of incumbency when he scored the endorsement of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Bill Clinton

The former president who helped turn New Jersey into a blue state led Patrick Murray’s Monmouth University poll this week as New Jerseyans’ favorite president.


Bob Menendez

New Jersey voters disapprove 41 – 36 percent of the job the embattled senator is doing, a 15-point drop in less than a month. Forty-four – 28 percent say that he is not honest and trustworthy, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released this week.

Geraldo Rivera

Newark Democratic Mayor Cory Booker leads registered Republican TV personality Geraldo Rivera, 59 – 23% in a Quinnipiac University matchup. According to the poll, Republicans back Rivera 54 – 23%, while Booker leads all other political, gender, income, age and regional groups in the state.Booker leads 52 – 30 percent among men and 64 – 17 percent among women.

Lisa Ayers

The Mine Hill Fire Department treasurer was charged by complaint-summons with second-degree theft by unlawful taking. Ayers allegedly embezzled $75,000 in fire department monies, according to Attorney General Jeff Chiesa.

John Driscoll

The LD 38 state Senate candidate won’t have the support of his former running mate, Hawthorne Mayor Richard Goldberg, who is poised to endorse for the Senate Driscoll’s and Goldberg’s other 2011 running mate, Fernando Alonso. This is a snapshot from one week, however – the race is not over.

Abe Lincoln

Despite Hollywood’s best efforts to pump up the name ID of the fading 19th century brand name, the nation’s Moses-like 16th president placed an unimpressive fourth in Monmouth University’s much-discussed Presidents Day poll.

Pat Ciser and Felix Garcia

The retired Clifton Police Lt. Pat Ciser, and former Passaic County undersheriff respectively lost their bids to win Republican Party support for a run at Passaic County Sheriff Richard Berdnik. Frank Feenan of the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office outdueled Ciser and Garcia.  

Vin Gopal

The Monmouth County Democratic Chairman could not persuade Sea Bright Mayor Dina Long from backing Republican Governor Chris Christie.

Robert Schroeder

The indicted GOP assemblyman and his companies are banned from doing business with the federal government for “failing to pay subcontractors and deliver on tents ordered for soldiers in Afghanistan,” according to a report this afternoon in the Star-Ledger. Winners and Losers: McClellan’s Revenge