PolitickerNJ News Digest: August 4th

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie chats with Yousef Al Otaiba, United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the United States, at the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 11, 2015 in Sun Valley, Idaho, 2445 miles from New Jersey. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie chats with Yousef Al Otaiba, United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the United States, at the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 11, 2015 in Sun Valley, Idaho, 2445 miles from New Jersey. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Good morning, it’s Tuesday in the Garden State, where the city of Camden, and New Jersey roadways, are in need of cash and Gov. Chris Christie is busy seeking New Hampshire votes.
Menendez weighs in on Christie’s chances in 2016 before GOP debate
With the first Republican primary debate taking place Thursday night on Fox News, many are wondering what Governor Christie’s chances are in a race that has been more than competitive for all but front-runner Donald Trump. New Jersey Senator Cory Booker has been among the few who have come out to support the  governor’s bid, calling him “the most underestimated person in the field.”
(JT Aregood, Politickernj.com)
State of Transportation Trust Fund concerns NJ officials
Steps away from the intersection the Federal Railroad Administration named as “one of America’s most dangerous” last year, Congressman Bill Pascrell (D-9) was joined by other N.J. officials to unveil new safety measures put in place at the rail crossing. For Pascrell—who worked with New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner Jamie Fox and NJ Transit the pass the upgrades—the measures will help ensure no more accidents would occur in the future.
(Alyana Alfaro, Politickernj.com)
New GOP candidate jumps into LD19
Middlesex County Republican Chairman Samuel Thompson today announced the addition of Jesus Varela of Perth Amboy to the 19th Legislative District Assembly race. Varela joins the ticket following after Reyes Ortega notified the Division of Elections he was withdrawing his candidacy.
(Politickernj staff,Politickernj.com)
Christie PAC on the air in NH with $1 million ad buy
A couple weeks ago, the Bergen Record reported on a $1.1 million ad buy that America Leads, the PAC supporting Chris Christie, would be placing in New Hampshire and beyond. Now, a filing has added more color to that story.
(Politickernj staff,Politickernj.com)
Trump has a 2-1 lead over nearest GOP rival
Donald Trump has widened his national lead in the latest Monmouth University Poll of Republican voters and now holds a more than 2-to-1 advantage over his nearest rivals, Jeb Bush and Scott Walker.  The poll also found that few GOP voters like the idea of a “Top Ten” debate, with many preferring back-to-back debates with the field randomly split in half.
(Politickernj staff,Politickernj.com)
Menendez pushes for more federal aid following tour of Camden
Senator Bob Menendez paid a visit to Camden on Monday afternoon to tour the city’s Whitman Park neighborhood with Mayor Dana Redd and express his support for Camden’s stake in the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Choice Neighborhoods initiative.
Menendez is the sponsor of legislation to make the Choice Neighborhoods program a permanent fixture of the federal budget.
(JT Aregood, Politickernj.com)
Tyburczy wants tax relief in Bergen
Ken Tyburczy is a sitting councilman in Ramsey. Now, the Republican feels he is ready to take on a new role: Bergen County Freeholder.
Like fellow Republican challengers Daisy Ortiz-Berger and John Mitchell, Tyburczy says that one of the main reasons he decided to run for the county position is to try to provide some tax relief for Bergen County residents.
(Alyana Alfaro, Politickernj.com)
RNC fundraising posts record June
With PAC spending dominating the airwaves, many are starting to question the very existence of national political parties. The thinking goes that if the Koch Brothers, for example, are prepared to spend $889 million on the coming election, what role remains for the Republican National Committee?
(Ken Kurson, Politickernj.com)
Christie opposes Obama’s climate change plan
Two years in the making, President Obama formally unveiled the final steps of his “Clean Power Plan” to fight global climate change.
(Briana Vannozzi, NJTVnews.com)
National teacher’s union: Christie has anger management issues
A national teachers union leader lashed out at Gov. Chris Christie Monday, calling the presidential hopeful a “bully” with “anger management problems.”
(Matt Arco, NJ.com)
In N.H. forum, Christie touts Social Security changes, drug policies
With his campaign for the presidency bet squarely on New Hampshire, Gov. Chris Christie on Monday fielded questions right in his political wheelhouse, including how to tackle big problems like Social Security and the heroin epidemic.
(Matt Arco, NJ.com)
The Guv does the old switcheroo on global warming and guns
I realize Chris Christie has to run to the right if he is to have any chance whatsoever in the 2016 Republican presidential primary. But hearing him pull off the old switcheroo on so many issues is hard for those of us who are familiar with his earlier positions when he was trying to market himself as a moderate.
(Paul Mulshine, The Star Ledger)
Bergen County freeholders to vote on creating an LGBT panel
The Bergen County Freeholders are scheduled to vote Wednesday on a resolution that would create the county’s first-ever citizens’ advisory committee for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues.
(John C. Ensslin, The Record)
Christie can’t help himself
With Gov. Christie’s presidential poll numbers mired in the low single digits, he is craving attention any way he can get it. Well, he got it Sunday, but it wasn’t the kind of attention likely to bump up his numbers.
(Asbury Park Press)
S&P cuts Atlantic City’s credit rating
Standard and Poor’s cut Atlantic City’s credit rating three notches on Monday, citing its quickly shrinking tax base and uncertainty over how it will boost fiscal responsibility. The city had its general obligation debt rating lowered to “B” from “BB.” The ratings agency kept Atlantic City on credit watch with negative implications
(Staff reports, The Press of Atlantic City)
Chris Christie Softens Tone on Minimum Wage Increases
Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey has ardently opposed raising the minimum wage in New Jersey, but on Monday he hinted that his opposition might not be absolute.
(Alan Rappeport, The New York Times)
PolitickerNJ News Digest: August 4th