NJ Politics Digest: NJEA Going to War Against Sweeney

The New Jersey Education Association is already trying to make its muscle felt.

Senate President Steve Sweeney. Alyana Alfaro for Observer

The November elections are still more than seven months away, but the New Jersey Education Association is already trying to make its muscle felt, threatening to work against Democrat Stephen Sweeney to prevent his re-election. Prosecutors are arguing for tough sentences for the two convicted Bridgegate defendants when they go before a judge Wednesday while a Democratic lawmaker is pressuring the state attorney general to release information from a whistleblower lawsuit related to the firing of a former assistant Hunterdon County prosecutor who claimed politics played a part in the dismissal of an indictment against supporters of Gov. Chris Christie.

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Quote of the Day: “We’re looking for a new governor and a new Senate president,” – NJEA President Wendell Steinhauer, on the group’s efforts to oust Senate President Steve Sweeney.

In risky bet, N.J. teachers’ union campaigns to oust Senate President Sweeney
Gov. Christie has antagonized New Jersey’s largest teachers’ union since he took office in 2010, once declaring on television that the national organization deserved a punch in the face.
Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Read more

Prosecutors: Ex-Christie allies lied
Two ex-allies of Republican Gov. Chris Christie committed perjury on the witness stand during their corruption trial last fall and shouldn’t be given any leniency at sentencing this week, government prosecutors wrote to a judge Monday.
Associated Press Read more

Lawmaker wants whistleblower lawsuit documents released
A Democratic lawmaker wants New Jersey’s attorney general to release documents from a $1.5 million whistleblower lawsuit related to the potential prosecution of supporters of Republican Gov. Chris Christie.
Associated Press Read more

Here’s how much N.J. taxpayers have kicked in to 2017 governor’s race
Two gubernatorial hopefuls vying to succeed Gov. Chris Christie have received more than $1.7 million in public funds to date, officials announced on Monday.
Matt Arco, NJ.com Read more

Christie signs bill to spend $400M on transportation
Gov. Chris Christie on Monday signed a bill authorizing $400 million in spending on transportation projects over the next three months.
Dustin Racioppi, The Record Read more

Christie dares NJ sanctuary cities to risk losing federal funds
Gov. Chris Christie told the mayors of the state’s two largest cities to “have at it” by declaring themselves “sanctuary” cities after the Trump administration once again threatened to cut federal funding.,
NJ101.5 Read more

N.J. credit rating cut for 11th time under Christie
Financial analysts on Wall Street have downgraded New Jersey’s credit rating once again, renewing their warnings about the state’s poorly managed budget and deeply underfunded pension system for public workers.
Salvador Rizzo, The Record Read more

Chris Christie to head Trump opioid abuse commission
Chris Christie is getting a part-time volunteer job assignment from President Donald Trump — something that won’t change Christie’s status as governor as New Jersey, reports say.
Bob Jordan, Asbury Park Press Read more

Is Christie the right choice for drug commissioner?
Fresh off of being bounced as head of Donald Trump’s transition team in November, with an approval rating that sank to the mid-teens, Gov. Chris Christie donned hospital scrubs and held a baby born to a mother who used opioids during pregnancy.
Ken Serrano, Asbury Park Press Read more

In fight over EMS, Virtua Hospital blasts Camden County’s ‘political machine’
Virtua Hospital executives on Monday accused Camden County freeholders of fear-mongering, saying the board is attacking Virtua’s emergency response times so as to clear the way for rival Cooper University Hospital to take over as the county’s provider.
Allison Steele, Inquirer Read more

Democrats to hold second Assembly vote Tuesday night
A vote to decide the second Democratic nominee for state Assembly will be held Tuesday night, nine days after the party failed to pick a candidate for the ticket with 2nd District incumbent Vince Mazzeo.
Press of Atlantic City Read more

Will NJ Tighten Emission Standards?
For the time being, New Jersey is still going to have to figure out a way to begin selling low-emission vehicles in greater numbers.
Tom Johnson, NJSpotlight Read more

Here’s what Shore towns could lose in Trump’s budget
Kula Cafe in Asbury Park trains teens for jobs in food service. Over 16 weeks, they learn to cook and serve, and they earn a certification to work in restaurants.
Payton Guion, Asbury Park Press Read more

Will NJ Be Affected by Court Ruling on Special Ed
When the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 8-0 last week in favor of raising standards for special education nationwide, the decision was widely applauded by parent and children advocates.
John Mooney, NJSpotlight Read more

Court: NJ not liable in toxic cleanup
New Jersey isn’t on the hook for part of an $80 million toxic waste cleanup along the Raritan Bay, the state Supreme Court ruled on Monday.
Associated Press Read more

Rental practices in college town are discriminatory, suit claims
A group of Glassboro residents — including homeowners and students — are suing the borough, claiming the town’s rental policies discriminate against students and are selectively enforced.
Caitlyn Stulpin, NJ.com Read more

Joint Base reports high levels of two hazardous chemicals in water
A pair of hazardous chemicals used for decades in firefighting at Joint Base McGuire/Dix/Lakehurst have contaminated ground, surface, and drinking water on and near the base, a spokesman said last week, with tests showing levels 20 to thousands of times higher in some samples than federally recommended standards.
David O’Reilly, Inquirer Read more

Jared Kushner to meet with Senate Intelligence Committee in Russia probe
Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is expected to meet with the Senate Intelligence Committee in its investigation of Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, as congressional inquiries and a separate FBI investigation into possible ties between Trump associates and Russia officials threaten to engulf the administration.
Kevin Johnson , USA TODAY Read more

Bill Clinton highlights Fairleigh speaker series
A former British Prime Minister and the 42nd president of the United States highlight the New Jersey Speaker Series, presented by Fairleigh Dickinson University beginning this fall.
Daily Record Read more

EDITORIAL: PARCC’s back, but for how long?
PARCC exams are back in town this week, appearing at your neighborhood schools all across the state.
Asbury Park Press Read more

Gov. McGreevey: Justice, education reforms for juveniles good for business
“I’m just tryin’ to get a job and make it to 20 or 21,” said a 16-year-old enrolled in our youth reentry program. After or between incarceration, school districts largely discard these youths; the primary schooling of running, gunning and doping is often learned on the streets.
Craig Livermore and James McGreevey Read more

NJ Politics Digest: NJEA Going to War Against Sweeney