Winners and Losers: Week of September 22nd

WINNERS

Tom MacArthur

In arguably the most competitive contest of the season, the CD3 Republican candidate forced Comcast to take down an inaccurate Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) television advertisement – the second of three forced off the air. “Our attorney was literally on the steps of the Ocean County Courthouse to file our defamation lawsuit against the DCCC,” MacArthur said in a victory dance shortly after the ad came down.

Steve Sweeney

Chris Christie got Republican Richard Mroz to chair the Board of Public Utilities (BPU), and as part of the same deal, Democrats got Upendra Chivukula on the board. This week, the legislature also signed off on Christie’s nominee to head of the Department of Transportation (DOT), who next appears on this list. That’s a good outcome for the Senate President, who spent August pointing to the need for the governor to address the Transportation Trust Fund (TTF).

Jamie Fox

The state’s new Department of Transportation commissioner received glowing praise from both sides of the aisle in his appointment hearing this week, and even won the vote of movement conservative state Sen. Mike Doherty (R-23). To quote PolitickerNJ reporter Chase Brush’s report from the committee room on Monday, “Many agree Fox is the best and most knowledgable person to sell the solution to funding that reserve (likely a gas tax — one that hits the refineries harder than the consumers).”

Loretta Weinberg and Bob Gordon

The New Jersey Senate this week passed S2181, authored by the Senate Majority Leader from LD37 and the 38th District senator. The bill concentrates numerous reforms for the scandal-beleaguered Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. It passed unanimously, 38-0.

Frank LoBiondo

University of Virginia political scientist Larry Sabato moved New Jersey’s 2nd Congressional District from “leans” to “Safe” Republican in his Sabato’s Crystal Ball column, an optic that doesn’t hurt the veteran incumbent Republican congressman.

Wilda Diaz

The city council slate belonging to the mayor of Perth Amboy this week formally received the endorsement of Billy Delgado, the attorney who unsuccessfully ran against Diaz in 2012.

LOSERS

Vincent Falci

The New Jersey Bureau of Securities, represented by the Division of Law, filed suit against the former Monmouth County fire chief and various investment companies he operated, after he allegedly defrauded 182 investors through the sale of approximately $5.4 million in unregistered securities. 

Eugene and Jacob Spiegel

The state Division of Criminal Justice indicted the former chief of the Seaville Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company and his son, a member of that volunteer force, for allegedly receiving payments of approximately $46,000 based on fraudulent invoices and receipts they submitted for reimbursement to the fire company and Upper Township Fire Commissioners, according to Acting Attorney General John Hoffman.

Newark

According to sources familiar with what went on at a meeting between Newark lawmakers and officials in the Christie administration, going back to 2011 with the implementation of Chapter 78 and the state’s overhaul of pensions and benefits, the City of Newark did not adjust employee healthcare contributions to the new rate in accordance with the new law. That puts another burden on the sitting city administration.

Bill Hughes, Jr.

Despite running an aggressive campaign against GOP incumbent LoBiondo, the Democratic challenger in CD2 suffered a setback this week when Sabato’s Crystal Ball moved the race from “leans” to “safe” Republican.

Aimee Belgard

Although polling shows her running even with MacArthur in arguably the most competitive New Jersey Congressional race of the season, the CD3 Democratic contender had to weather the embarrassment this week of Comcast pulling a hard-hitting ad running in support of Belgard by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC).

Michael Sorrentino

The feds indicted Jersey Shore cable television personality and his brother Marc Sorrentino on a charge that they did not properly pay taxes on $8.9 million in income Michael Sorrentino received from promotional activities, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Conrail

Assembly Deputy Speaker John Burzichelli (D-3) wants federal and state prosecutors to investigate the possibility of criminal charges against Conrail in the aftermath of a 2012 derailment that forced the evacuation of Paulsboro. In a letter sent to both the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the state Attorney General, Burzichelli cited a report by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which determined that Conrail’s failure to repair a defective locking mechanism on the bridge, coupled with its failure to properly train rail crews to inspect the bridge, likely caused the accident.

Winners and Losers: Week of September 22nd