PolitickerNJ News Digest: March 17th

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Good morning, it’s Thursday in New Jersey, and the fallout from Tuesday’s primary elections continues and more state Republicans are picking sides.

Quote of the Day: “Right now Trump is the odds-on favorite. Cruz is about 200, 250 delegates behind right now. You look at the map and the contests that are coming up, I think it’s going to be difficult to beat Trump at this point. Not saying impossible,” _ Ocean County GOP Chairman George Gilmore on the presidential race.

What’s Next for NJ’s Rubio Supporters?
Now that Florida Senator Marco Rubio has dropped out of the presidential race, the well-organized group of supporters he had on the ground in New Jersey has been left without a candidate. With the Republican race still divided three ways between billionaire Donald Trump, Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich, New Jersey’s Rubio supporters still have a slew of candidates to back.
Alyana Alfaro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Ocean County Chairman: Trump ‘Odds-On Favorite’
Following another string of victories for Donald Trump during Tuesday’s primaries, New Jersey’s Republican party will have to choose between endorsing the GOP frontrunner along with Governor Chris Christie, and breaking with the governor. Ocean County Republican Chairman George Gilmore told PolitickerNJ that while he is still undecided, Trump seems to be on a clear path to more success in the state-by-state primaries.
JT Aregood, PolitickerNJ Read more

Pallone Tells Republicans to Give Judge Garland a Fair Hearing
U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-6), the most-senior member of the New Jersey Democratic Congressional Delegation, this morning demanded that Republican lawmakers grant Judge Merrick Garland a prompt and fair hearing.
Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJ Read more

Christie’s 2017 Budget Draws Criticism at Budget Hearing
Governor Chris Christie’s 2017 budget drew criticism from speakers at the Assembly Budget Committee’s public hearing Wednesday as the committee heard from nonprofit groups and public-private partners struggling to maintain services in the face of tight state finances
JT Aregood, PolitickerNJ Read more

Venezia Fires Back at Lopez and Strumolo for ‘Blatantly False’ Statements
The lead-up to the Bloomfield Democratic mayoral primary on June 7 is looking like it is going to be a roller coaster ride.
Alyana Alfaro, PolitickerNJ Read more

GOP Pollster Adam Geller Nails It in Florida
Last night clearly belonged to Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. But if you’re looking for a New Jersey angle, a good one can be found in Adam Geller, the GOP pollster who runs National Research, Inc.
Kevin B. Sanders, PolitickerNJ Read more

1,000 cops in Newark: Is that enough?
While dozens of new officers have joined the Newark Police Department in the last year, a significant increase in manpower remains elusive.
Vernal Coleman, NJ.com Read more
Jersey City ‘winning the fight on crime,’ Fulop says in annual address
Public safety was at the forefront of Mayor Steve Fulop’s state of the city address tonight, with Fulop calling a decrease in crime the nucleus for the growth in development citywide and saying the city is “winning the fight on crime.”
Terrence T. McDonald, The Jersey Journal Read more

Number of retired N.J. officials with $100K+ public pension will double in 5 years
The ranks of retired public officials who collect more than $100,000 a year from New Jersey pensions have more than doubled in the past five years, according to an NJ Spotlight analysis of state Treasury data.
Mark Lagerkvist, NJSpotlight Read more

Mayor’s comment about ban on real estate solicitations sparks claim of anti-Semitism
A spat is brewing between two neighboring mayors in Ocean County where one town leader accused the other of engaging in anti-Semitic conduct to defend an ordinance banning real estate solicitors in certain areas.
MaryAnn Spoto, NJ.com Read more

Paterson mayor denies wrongdoing in hiring DPW staffers for home project
Asserting that he did nothing wrong, Mayor Joey Torres on Wednesday said he would welcome a criminal investigation into allegations involving city employees performing work at his Arlington Avenue home.
Joe Malinconico, The Record Read more

PolitickerNJ News Digest: March 17th