Morning Digest: July 19, 2013

Christie hopes Latino vote brings big victory

PATERSON – The state’s Republican incumbent governor is hoping a campaign surge within New Jersey’s Latino community will help give way to a “very, very, very big win in November.” PolitickerNJ


Lonegan attacks Booker in radio ad

U.S. Senate candidate Steve Lonegan has skipped right over the August primary election and moved into his general campaign. PolitickerNJ



Latest from State Street Wire

Enviro group issues report card for lawmakers

TRENTON – An environmental group issued a legislative scorecard Thursday covering the first three years of the Christie administration and gave a majority of the state’s 120 legislators failing marks. State Street Wire

Sign up for a free trial of State Street Wire at 



DEP report says fracking chemicals didn’t spread

PITTSBURGH — A landmark federal study on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, shows no evidence that chemicals from the natural gas drilling process moved up to contaminate drinking water aquifers at a western Pennsylvania drilling site, the Department of Energy told The Associated Press. Huffington Post


Syria’s refugee crisis worsens

An average of 6,000 Syrians a day have fled their war-torn country since the beginning of 2013, in what the United Nations considers one of the worst humanitarian crises in recent history. More than 1.8 million Syrians have officially registered as refugees since the start of the conflict in March 2011, taking shelter in neighboring countries Jordan, Iraq, Turkey and Lebanon. Huffington Post



NSA leaks: Service or anarchy?

ASPEN, Colo.—The head of the American Civil Liberties Union vigorously endorsed the leaks by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden as a “service” to the nation Thursday, as former officials decried the fugitive tech specialist as someone who endangered national security by violating his secrecy pledges. Politico



McConnell’s fractured caucus

The once-united Senate Republican Conference is splintering. Politico


Snowden standoff threatens summit

The standoff between the U.S. and Russia over fugitive former security contractor Edward Snowden may threaten a September summit between Presidents Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin, according to former diplomats. Bloomberg


Insurance premiums seen lower than forecast on health law

Premiums for some medical plans to be sold to the uninsured next year will be 18 percent less costly than government analysts expected under President Barack Obama’s signature health-care law, his administration reported. Bloomberg


Spitzer on airwaves but not the street

Last night, Eliot Spitzer sat down with CNN’s Piers Morgan–marking the latest in a string of more than a dozen high-profile national television and radio interviews since he jumped into the race 11 days ago. He’s been on Jay Leno, sat for interviews with Charlie Rose and Chris Hayes; and later this afternoon he’ll be back on CNN for an interview with Jake Tapper, followed by a sit-down on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report. PolitickerNY


Fewer than one in three expected to get Sandy grants

Fewer than one in three Sandy victims who applied for money from the state to rebuild or elevate their homes will receive grants, state officials said. Asbury Park Press


Court says police need warrant to track cell phones

In a move that civil-liberties groups hope will expand privacy protections for the digital age, the state Supreme Court declared on Thursday that police in New Jersey must first obtain a search warrant before using cellphone data to track a suspect. Record


Brothel in Lakewood busted as part of slave ring

The women left Mexico and put their lives in the hands of shifty border smugglers just so they could be baby sitters or house cleaners, anything that would pay enough for a nice apartment, a good meal and perhaps some money to send home. Star-Ledger


Delaware court tosses shipment case affecting Paulsboro

A Delaware appeals court threw out a case Tuesday that could have prevented 45,000 barrels of crude oil from being shipped to the PBF refinery in Paulsboro from PBF’s Delaware City location each day. South Jersey Times


Prominent Trenton developer indicted

Over the course of building affordable housing in Trenton, developer Robert Kahan misstated his net worth in order to obtain huge loans, then skimmed money from the accounts to buy a condominium in Florida and make repairs on his son’s home, a federal indictment alleged today. Trenton Times


NJ Transit says bathrooms at Penn Stationfixed

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) – New Jersey Transit says its bathrooms at New York City’s Penn Station have been fixed. Associated Press



DRPA plans iPads for aides to cut paper costs

The Delaware River Port Authority has purchased iPads for some of its top officials to cut the printing and distribution costs of agendas and monthly reports. Inquirer


Brouhaha over wording in anti-bullying code

The wording is buried deep in the Christie administration’s latest regulatory changes for public schools, a notation calling for removal of a single sentence from current regulations referring to certain required services and “corrective actions.” NJ Spotlight


Detroit tumbles into insolvency

DETROIT — Detroit, the cradle of America’s automobile industry and once the nation’s fourth-most-populous city, filed for bankruptcy on Thursday, the largest American city ever to take such a course. NY Times


Catholic Christie tiptoes on gay marriage

As activists push states to recognize gay marriages, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie — conservative Republican governor in a blue state and a 2016 presidential possibility — is walking a fine line between two electorates and two elections. Religion News Service




Stand your ground or die trying

GEORGE Zimmerman was found not guilty of second-degree murder and manslaughter. The neighborhood watchman who shot and killed an unarmed teen in a Florida suburb on Feb. 26, 2012, was acquitted by a jury of six women this past weekend. Zimmerman is now free and his victim, Trayvon Martin, is still dead. Doblin, Record


Morning Digest: July 19, 2013