Winners and Losers: Week of Christie’s State of the State

Christie's 2015 State of the State address numerous times had Republicans (left) and Democrats (right) split on whether they should show their support.

Christie’s 2015 State of the State address numerous times had Republicans (left) and Democrats (right) split on whether they should show their support.

WINNERS

Rafael Fajardo

The longtime Elizabeth Board of Education leader lost his re-election bid last year, but persuaded new Board President Ana Maria Amin, who ran on the opposing ticket backed by Mayor Chris Bollwage and state Senator Ray Lesniak (D-20), to switch sides and oppose her own election time allies.

George Norcross III

If the power position of the South Jersey Democratic Party boss was ever in doubt, just listen to Governor Chris Christie’s State of the State speech. Newark is New Jersey’s biggest city, but Christie mentioned “Camden” ten times in his State of the State speech on Tuesday, compared to just three shout-outs to Newark.

Dana Redd

Citing the “extraordinary” leadership of the mayor, Christie held up Camden as an example of “what we can achieve,” despite the fact, according to Philly.com, that last year’s homicide count was essentially the same as in 2009, which had 34, and 2006, when there were 32.

Steven Fulop

The mayor of Jersey City railed against a Gov. Chris Christie-championed termination of overnight PATH service, and this week, that idea – not PATH – shuddered to a halt, giving the mayor a win.

Stephen Sweeney

Lest Fulop in a 2017 gubernatorial debate claim sole credit for killing the PATH privatization idea, the senate president expressed to Port Authority Chairman John Degnan his own desire to see the plan tomahawked, and played a key role in that outcome.

Chief Carty

Chief Carty

Jason Carty

Ten years a career fire fighter, 20 years a firefighter, the veteran labor operative and U.S. Coast Guard veteran made chief of the Westampton Township Fire Department.

Adam Taliaferro

South Jersey Democrats this week tapped the Gloucester County freeholder to succeed Cumberland County Clerk Celeste Riley as assemblyperson in the 3rd Congressional District.

 

LOSERS

Chris Christie

He’s still the governor of New Jersey, and in this state where the governor by definition retains extraordinary executive power, his priorities retain significance. But it was another tough week for Christie as he delivered his mostly tepidly received State of the State speech. A Fairleigh Dickinson University poll determined that 39% say they approve of the job Christie’s doing as governor, while 47% disapprove.  Half (49%) express concern over the direction the state is headed, with just over a third (36%) content with its trajectory. According to the poll, “Governor Christie’s approval rating remains low, he’s lost the approval of female voters, and New Jerseyans feel he is focused on becoming president and shirking his gubernatorial duties.”

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Newark

With the exception of invoking the northern city in the context of drug treatment, Christie – a Newark native – left Brick City practically untouched in his remarks as Mayor Ras Baraka sat in the chamber. That said, there is an opportunity for Newark with the announced closing this week of the Izod Center and a foreseeable shift from the Meadowlands to the city.

Barack Obama

The President of the United States endured another week of criticism for failing to field a U.S. emissary in France for the largest human rights march in that country’s history following the Charlie Hebdo killings.

North Jersey

The State of New Jersey finally pulled out of its 34-year ownership of the Izod Center arena in the Meadowlands, citing $8.5 million in losses and mounting state subsidies, according to NJ.com. The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority voted this week to shutter the arena by the end of the month, dealing an economic blow to the region.

New Jersey Press Corps

Shouldered aside by Fox News, NJ reporters had zero access to Governor Chris Christie in the lead-up to the governor’s State of the State speech on Tuesday, later prompting the president of the New Jersey Press Association (NJPA) to fire off a letter to the governor expressing his “disappointment and concern.”

Winners and Losers: Week of Christie’s State of the State