Winners and Losers: Week of May 4th
WINNERS (PolitickerNJ Editor)
Monmouth Poll: Fed indictment of Menendez ‘politically motivated,’ New Jerseyans say
Most New Jerseyans who have heard about the federal indictment against Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) think it was politically motivated but still say he is probably guilty of the charges. The Monmouth University Poll found that the senator’s approval rating took a hit since the charges, but most say he should be given the chance to clear his name before having to resign from office. (Pizarro/PolitickerNJ)
The PolitickerNJ Interview: North Bergen mayoral candidate Larry Wainstein
NORTH BERGEN — Horns blared. Supporters brandished campaign signs and literature, chanting “Larry, Larry” as Latin music blasted from the open windows of idling cars. They flooded the empty parking lot off of Bergenline Ave. — the site where Lawrence “Larry” Wainstein, the wealthy local businessman challenging incumbent Nick Sacco in the town’s nonpartisan mayoral race, held his latest rally ahead of Tuesday’s election. (Brush/PolitickerNJ)
West New York mayor’s race: On election eve, Roque, Wiley ready for the big dance
WEST NEW YORK – West New York held its annual municipal Mother’s Day celebration on Saturday at the Hudson County town’s middle school, three days before it is thrust in the middle of the mother of all local political events: the West New York municipal election, headlined by the mayor’s race.
More than 700 people packed into the school gym, dancing to classic Cuban music and feasting on chicken and rice, beans and plantains. And as to be expected, politics pierced the peace and calm as the main mayoral candidates got in some last minute campaigning, hitting each other with words if not holiday hydrangeas. (Bonamo/PolitickerNJ)
North Bergen: Last ditch salvo in mayoral race blasts ‘dubious’ home purchase
NORTH BERGEN — A last-ditch salvo in the nonpartisan mayoral race here has the incumbent’s team accusing their opponent of using some sketchy financial gymnastics to purchase his home for cheap — just ten dollars, to be exact.
The campaign of incumbent mayor Nick Sacco this afternoon alleged that challenger Larry Wainstein, a local businessman and longtime establishment agitator, used “one of dozens of shell corporations involved in the twisted web of Wainstein finances” to purchase his North Bergen home for $339,000 cash in November of 2013. Eight months later, according to documents provided by the campaign, he transferred it to himself for $10. (Brush/PolitickerNJ)
West New York mayor’s race: Munoz speaks out against Roque
WEST NEW YORK – Former Hudson County Freeholder Jose Munoz might be Cuban-born like his fellow West New York resident, Mayor Felix Roque, but the two politicos remain bitter, longtime rivals.
Munoz testified against Roque and his son at a 2013 federal trial after charges were filed against the Roques in 2012 for allegedly hacking a website set up by then-Freeholder Munoz that aimed to recall Roque. Roque was acquitted of the charges in October 2013; his son, Joseph, was convicted of a misdemeanor. (Bonamo/PolitickerNJ)
DiMaio offers a measured version of Doherty’s criticism on Bridgegate
State Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) is not the only Republican in the legislature who says Bridgegate began with Gov. Chris Christie.
Offering a tempered version of the criticism Doherty levied against the governor earlier this week, Assemblyman John DiMaio (D-23), the senator’s district-mate, suggested that Christie could be responsible for creating a “culture” in which his subordinates felt it admissible to close access lanes at the mouth of the George Washington Bridge in 2013 as political retribution for a local Democratic mayor. He said it’s “hard to believe” that it actually happened, “but it if did, you could kind of see how they might have gotten ahead of themselves.” (Brush/PolitickerNJ)
The PolitickerNJ Interview: Count Wiley
A chiropractor by trade, West New York Commissioner Count Wiley thinks he’s got what it takes to straighten out West New York and take out incumbent Mayor Felix Roque. Wiley sized up Roque in an interview as he looked at the issues facing the Hudson County town. (Bonamo/PolitickerNJ)
In Bridge Investigation, Michael Critchley Represents Former Chris Christie Aide Bridget Anne Kelly
In the days before federal prosecutors handed down indictments related to the George Washington Bridge lane-closure scandal, attorney Michael Critchley prepared a public-relations strategy.
If prosecutors had what he considered a smoking gun against his client, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s former deputy chief of staff Bridget Anne Kelly, he would keep a low profile. If they didn’t unearth major developments beyond what subpoenaed records released by state Democrats last year had shown, Mr. Critchley would come out swinging. (Haddon/Wall Street Journal)
The GOP top 10: Ranking the candidates for the nomination
A 2016 poll came out in New Hampshire this past week that carried some very bad news for Chris Christie.
The survey, conducted by WMUR-TV, showed the New Jersey governor at 3 percent in the New Hampshire Republican primary, putting him in 11th place in the field — and two points behind reality show “star”/political huckster Donald Trump. Worse for Christie is that when WMUR last polled on the New Hampshire primary, in February, he took 9 percent of the vote. (Cilliza/Washington Post)
Christie Greets New Hampshire Residents, Discusses Political Issues
If Chris Christie is going to have a shot at winning his party’s nomination for president, he’s going to need to do well here, and to do well here, he’s going to have to do a lot of this.
At Joey’s Diner in Amherst this morning, the governor shook almost every hand in the joint and engaged in some sometimes substantive small talk with voters, eager to meet the guy they’ve been hearing so much about. (Cruz/NJTV)
Slowly rebuilding after Sandy, but thousands still displaced while working with N.J. program
More than 2½ years after Superstorm Sandy caused a multibillion-dollar path of destruction, just one-eighth of homeowners — or about 1,000 — in the state’s primary rebuilding program have completed construction and returned home.
While that figure represents a marked uptick in progress since the end of last year, when just 330 had completed reconstruction, it amounts to just a fraction of the approximately 8,300 homeowners enrolled in the state’s Rehabilitation, Reconstruction, Elevation and Mitigation Program, or RREM. (Leudekke/The Record)
Howard Dean to headline NJ Dems conference in AC next week
Former Vermont governor and Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean will headline the welcoming reception for the annual New Jersey Democratic State Committee (NJDSC) conference in Atlantic City.
Dean will appear at the reception scheduled for Thursday night at Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City. He will then attend an issues roundtable of the New Jersey Dems’ Progressive Caucus. (Bonamo/PolitickerNJ)
Two former Hudson County sheriff’s officers sentenced
Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman announced that two former Hudson County sheriff’s officers were sentenced to state prison and county jail today for signing false documents so that a bounty hunter could collect additional fees for fugitives he didn’t catch. The bounty hunter, Adel Mikhaeil, who paid the sheriff’s officers for their aid, was sentenced in March to six years in prison. (PolitickerNJ)
College to honor former Speaker Haytaian
Two former Warren County freeholders who spearheaded the effort to make Warren County Community College a reality will be recognized on May 16 when the College library is named the Haytaian-Maier Library. (PolitickerNJ)
Davis event crammed with Hudson warhorses
Having dethroned his predecessor last year, Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis threw a fundraising bash last night attended by 400 people, among them U.S. Rep. Albio Sires (D-8), Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise, Assembly candidate Nick Chiaravallotti, state Senator Sandy Cunningham (D-31), and Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-31), chairman of the Hudson County Democratic Organization (HCDO). (PolitickerNJ)