NJ Politics Digest: Guadagno Ready To Step Out

It’s the start of a new week in Trenton, a week that is expected to see Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno officially launch her bid to replace Gov. Chris Christie and keep the GOP in control of the governor’s office.
It’s also the week that will see the inauguration of Donald Trump as our next president, and there were several stories published over the weekend about what that means for New Jersey’s roads, politics and the thousands of residents who currently receive insurance under the Affordable Care Act, which Trump has vowed to repeal.

Quote of the Day: “We know that one-third of our budget goes to the school fund, and you’re not ever going to affect property tax relief in this state, or lower property taxes, unless you at least address school funding,” Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick.

Guadagno to Launch Campaign
Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno will formally launch her campaign for governor Tuesday in Monmouth County, according to sources familiar with the planning.
Dustin Racioppi, The Record Read more

Will Trump era make Cory Booker a Democratic star?
There was a speech before a group of Democratic state legislators, an appearance on a Sunday talk show, and then a break with tradition by testifying against U.S. Attorney General-designate Jeff Sessions.
Jonathan D. Salant, NJ.com Read more

Blue state in a red Capitol: How will N.J. fare?
If New Jersey had a Facebook page, its relationship status with the White House during the eight years President Barack Obama was president would best be described as “complicated.”
Charles Stile, The Record Read more

Bridges, roads and rail all need funds for repair
President-elect Donald Trump has proposed large-scale investment in infrastructure to rebuild the nation’s roads and bridges and put thousands back to work. Will more money flow to New Jersey for transportation projects?
John E Seasly, The Record Read more

Showdown looming over school funding formula
Senate President Stephen Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto lobbed news releases back and forth this week urging each other to get serious about reforming the state’s school funding formula.
Nicholas Pugliese, The Record Read more

Hundreds rally in N.J. to oppose repeal of Obamacare
The prospect of Obamacare’s repeal by the Republican-controlled Congress and the incoming Trump Administration drew hundreds of people to rallies across the state on Sunday, where union leaders and Democratic elected officials and some who hoped to be vowed to fight to preserve the law that has provided coverage to hundreds of thousands of people in New Jersey.
Rebecca Everett and Steve Strunsky, NJ.com Read more

Obama, just before exiting, makes Jefferson boy’s day
A doctor once said Magiting “Kiko” Mina would not live longer than a year, but today he is an enthusiastic seventh-grader who bowls, plays the piano and cherishes a thank-you letter from President Obama.
Rob Jennings, NJ.com Read more

N.J. Congressman MacArthur votes no to repeal Obamacare
While U.S. House members on Friday overwhelmingly passed a vote to start in motion the repealing of the Affordable Care Act, Congressman Tom MacArthur was New Jersey’s lone Republican to say no.
Keldy Ortiz, The Record Read more

Is N.J.’s ‘weakling’ D.C. delegation bulking up in Trump era?
Can New Jersey soon be losing its status as a 98-pound weakling when it comes to wielding power in Washington?
NJ.com Read more

Camden chief to meet with House Speaker Paul Ryan on police use of force
Camden County Police Chief J. Scott Thomson will be among a group of law enforcement leaders meeting with House Speaker Paul Ryan Monday to talk about their efforts to improve use-of-force training and policies.
Rebecca Everett, NJ.com Read more

Meet the Republican businessman and actor you may not know is running for N.J. governor
Trivia question: Who was the first Republican candidate to jump into the 2017 New Jersey governor’s race?
Brent Johnson, NJ.com Read more

Christie leans left in N.J. but keeps door open on right
It was the week of two Chris Christies.
On Monday, the neo-liberal Chris Christie was back on the job, creating 20 new judgeships and signing off on their $9.3 million tab. He praised the state Judiciary that he once bashed as an unaccountable, elite enclave of liberal activism.
Charles Stile, The Record Read more

Christie’s crusade against heroin faces a rocky reality
Gov. Chris Christie outlined an ambitious agenda for battling addiction in New Jersey during his State of the State speech Tuesday, one that would unquestionably make an appreciable difference in the battle against opioids.
Stephen Stirling, NJ.com Read more

Why Christie says he turned down job offers from Trump
Gov. Chris Christie on Friday confirmed that he turned down “multiple” job offers to serve in President-elect Donald Trump’s incoming administration.
Brent Johnson, NJ.com Read more

Ex-N.J. firefighter Bill Brennan is determined to put Chris Christie behind bars and take his place as governor
Bill Brennan’s 2017 to-do list is short and simple — put Chris Christie in jail. Become the two-term New Jersey governor’s successor in Trenton.
Larry McShane, New York Daily News Read more

Can NJ home buyers afford to pay more?
Low unemployment rates and fatter paychecks are expected to give more people the confidence to buy homes in 2017. But at the same time, higher mortgage rates will make buying more costly.
Kathleen Lynn, Asbury Park Press Read more

More NJ, Shore families struggle to make ends meet: Report
Some 1.2 million New Jersey households – including a growing number at the Shore – don’t earn enough to afford basic necessities like rent and food, according to a new United Way report.
Payton Guion, Asbury Park Press Read more

Churches win as judge rules for Morris County
The Morris County freeholder board’s practice of giving historic preservation grants to churches since 2003 has been upheld as constitutional by a Superior Court judge, who dismissed a lawsuit against the grants from the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation.
Peggy Wright, Daily Record Read more

Ocean City may regulate street performers on the Boardwalk-noise and crowds are a problem
Ocean City officials are considering whether to regulate so-called street performers on the boardwalk after merchants complained about crowds and noise.
Jacqueline L. Urgo, Inquirer Read more NJ Politics Digest: Guadagno Ready To Step Out