PolitickerNJ News Digest: Feb. 25th


esexIt’s Thursday, and in New Jersey, Marco Rubio is gaining support from state GOP officials while the governor is still lying low following his failed presidential bid.

Quote of the Day: “The view in Atlantic City is that this is a civil rights issue, and that they’ve been following the state’s lead on the way the city’s been managed in the last several years,” – Atlantic County Republican chairman Keith Davis on state plans to control Atlantic City finances.

NJ for Rubio Burnishes More Local Support for Prez Candidate
More New Jersey elected officials said count them signed up for the Marco Rubio rodeo: including Mahawah Councilman Rob Hermansen, the former Bergen County freeholder.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

CD5: Can Gottheimer Topple Garrett?
Republican Congressman Scott Garrett has had a strong grip on his congressional district 5 seat since 2003. This year, Democratic challenger Josh Gottheimer is gunning for that position and his candidacy has become a top priority for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC)
Alyana Alfaro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Zwicker Campaign Brings in Super PAC Coordinator
Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker (D-16), who was the notable exception in a race marked by heavy PAC spending on behalf of Democratic Assembly candidates, will now be working with controversial PAC coordinator Ray Ferraioli’s firm H&P Consulting as he begins the long fundraising haul for 2017. An email invitation to a Zwicker fundraiser in Princeton with Assembly Speaker Vince Prieto (D-36) was sent directly from the group’s email address.
JT Aregood, PolitickerNJ Read more

Christie Evades Press After Newark School Ribbon Cutting
A hoard of reporters dashed around the new, state-of-the-art Elliot Street Elementary School on Wednesday, hoping to get a word with Governor Chris Christie during his second public appearance since his departure from the presidential race. While the Governor joined elected officials, students and school administrators for a ribbon cutting ceremony, he did not stick around long after his remarks, immediately exiting the stage and prompting reporters to (unsuccessfully) try and chase him down.
Alyana Alfaro, PolitickerNJ Read more

As AC Takeover Approaches, Partisan Politics Get Messy
Whether Atlantic City submits to a state takeover or not, bankruptcy is still on the table and county Republicans have been the most outspoken supporters of renegotiating the terms of its debts by restructuring. Assemblyman Chris Brown (R-2) has opposed the takeover while remaining ambivalent on the question of a municipal bankruptcy, but Atlantic County chairman Keith Davis and county executive Dennis Levinson remain committed to the idea.
JT Aregood, PolitickerNJ Read more

Holdsworth Leaving Current Party Post for Dems Convention Preparation
Jennifer Holdsworth, political director for the New Jersey Democratic State Committee, is leaving her current position to start a 501(c)4 to run the Democratic National Committee convention in Philadelphia for New Jersey.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Baraka Derides as Bogus the Suggestion of 2016-2017 Connective Political Tissue
The notion that 2017 statewide politics would impact his assessment of 2016 national politics is folly, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka said this afternoon, sticking a fork in a speculative PolitickerNJ piece that appeared earlier this month and twisting it for good measure.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Amid Backroom Meetings, Baraka Throws His Weight behind $15-an Hour for Port Workers
As Democratic Party leaders in the state legislature convene in backrooms trying to bring under one tent a plan to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, debating the pros of shorter versus longer intervals for the wage hike’s implementation, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka today called on the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to pay its airport workers $15 per hour.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Sources: Nothing Resolved at Minimum Wage Meeting; All Sides Talking

The Democratic Party leaders embroiled in the $15 minimum wage jam-up sat down with labor leaders at the Statehouse earlier today ostensibly to prevent a labor bloodbath.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Heard to Officially Challenge Lance in CD7
Craig Heard, a businessman from Succasunna, filed his Federal Election Commission (FEC) paperwork stating that he is running for congress in congressional district 7 on Wednesday. Heard will be challenging incumbent Leonard Lance, a fellow Republican, for the position.
Alyana Alfaro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Pinzon Launches Government Affairs Firm
Vice chair of the Elizabeth Housing Authority, member of the Latinas United for Political Empowerment (LUPE), and aide in the 20th Legislative District Office, Cristina Pinzon just formed Stateside Affairs, a public and government relations firm.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

The Judges from Jersey: Six Men Who Rose to the Supreme Court
The late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia hailed from Trenton, New Jersey, and his death earlier this month prompted us to revisit those other men from New Jersey who ascended to serve on the highest court in the land.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Ex-Westwood councilman pleads guilty in scheme to provide fake massage training certificates to prostitutes
A former Westwood councilman pleaded guilty to federal charges on Wednesday, confessing that he sold phony massage therapy training certificates to women who worked as prostitutes at more than two dozen massage parlors in New Jersey.
Peter J. Sampson, The Record Read more

Newark mayor to create office to oversee Port Authority
Newark’s airport and seaport don’t belong to the Port Authority or to the State of New Jersey, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka told a crowd of almost 100 union employees on Wednesday.
Paul Berger, The Record Read more

Paterson mayor warns budget crisis may force shutdown of city government
The mayor said he is making preparations for a shutdown of Paterson’s municipal government next week unless the City Council changes it decision rejecting proposed changes in the 2016 budget.
Joe Malinconico, The Record Read more

How N.J. could intervene in Atlantic City
Even if New Jersey doesn’t pass legislation that would allow the state to take control of Atlantic City’s finances, existing law gives the state the authority to do just that, according to a memo prepared by the nonpartisan Office of Legislative Services.
Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Read more

Lawmaker proposes lowering New Jersey’s drinking age to 18
A New Jersey legislator wants to lower New Jersey’s drinking age from 21 to 18.
Associated Press Read more

North Bergen to sue Palisades General Medical Center over tax exempt status
North Bergen is poised to file a lawsuit challenging the tax exempt status of Palisades General Medical Center and The Harborage nursing home, whose 8.6-acre campus overlooking the Hudson River is some of the most expensive real estate in the world.
Nicholas Pugliese, The Record Read more

Carteret police director charged with DWI after crash
Just three weeks after he was hired, the Carteret police director was charged with driving under the influence after a single-vehicle crash Tuesday night, police said.
Brian Amaral, NJ.com Read more

Ex-state treasurer to talk about N.J.’s budgetary challenges
Former state treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff who resigned last July will be talking at Rider University next week about the budgetary challenges facing the state.
Cristina Rojas, NJ.com Read more PolitickerNJ News Digest: Feb. 25th