NJ Politics Digest: MacArthur Leaves Chair of GOP Moderates’ Caucus

Rep. Tom MacArthur in March heading into a meeting with House Speaker Paul Ryan. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The Tuesday Group giveth; the Tuesday Group taketh away. Rep. Tom MacArthur resigned the co-chairmanship of a group of moderate Republican lawmakers on Tuesday, citing deep divisions after the controversial American Health Care Act he helped write passed the House. The Tuesday Group helped make MacArthur a Washington power player on health care. Democrats said his resignation showed MacArthur was no moderate.

Gov. Chris Christie on Tuesday announced NJ Transit would be reducing some fares amid delays and service interruptions this summer as urgent maintenance work is done at Penn Station. And Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto all but declared dead a bill Christie wants this year to raid the reserves of New Jersey’s largest health insurance company and use the money to fight the opioid epidemic.

Quote of the Day: “You can’t lead people where they don’t want to go.” – Rep Tom MacArthur

Christie’s Horizon Plan Not Getting a Hearing, Prieto Says
A plan from Gov. Chris Christie to raid the reserves kept by New Jersey’s largest health insurer, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, will not get a committee hearing “at this time” and “is of serious concern” to the entire Democratic caucus in the Assembly, Speaker Vincent Prieto said Tuesday.
Salvador Rizzo, Observer Read more

MacArthur Resigns as Tuesday Group Co-Chair
Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-3) today resigned as co-chairman of the Tuesday Group, a group of moderate Republicans in the House, citing deep divisions among the members after the House passage of the American Health Care Act earlier this month.
Alyana Alfaro, Observer Read more

Lawmakers want to expand New Jersey paid family leave
Democratic lawmakers want to expand the state’s family leave law, saying it’s underused and should provide greater compensation, but their move to do so adds to a growing list of progressive agenda items that may have to wait until Republican Gov. Chris Christie leaves office in January.
Bob Jordan, Asbury Park Press Read more

Christie, Cuomo plot out transit plans as ‘summer of hell’ looms
As New York and New Jersey residents continue to grapple with the region’s ailing mass transit system, Governors Andrew Cuomo and Chris Christie on Tuesday stood before reporters on opposite sides of the Hudson River and, in dueling press conferences, explained how they planned to deal with the crisis.
Dana Rubinstein and Ryan Hutchins, Politico Read more

Not much praise in New Jersey for Donald Trump’s budget
If President Donald Trump was expecting to applause for his proposed budget, he certainly wasn’t getting it from New Jersey’s delegation in Congress on Tuesday.
Herb Jackson, The Record Read more

Trump wants to close military bases, but N.J. Joint Base may be spared
Even as he proposed boosting defense spending by $54 billion, President Donald Trump followed the lead of his predecessor in asking for a new round of military base closings.
Jonathan D. Salant, NJ.com Read more

Sandy showed need for gasoline reserves in Northeast. Trump wants to sell them off.
After Hurricane Sandy led to a weeks-long shortage of gasoline, the U.S. Energy Department stockpiled 1 million barrels of fuel for northeastern motorists in case of another major storm.
Jonathan D. Salant, NJ.com Read more

One NJ Transit line will suffer the most during Penn Station project
The Morris & Essex line will bear the biggest brunt of the summer project at Penn Station New York, with reductions in both service and fares.
Dan Alexander, NJ101.5 Read more

Wisniewski Blasts Murphy for Not Paying Canvassers $15 Per Hour
Democratic gubernatorial front-runner Phil Murphy wants to raise New Jersey’s minimum wage to $15 an hour, but his canvassers are working for $12.50, Assemblyman John Wisniewski said Tuesday, rolling out a new line of attack as the June 6 primary nears.
Alyana Alfaro, Observer Read more

Wisniewski makes case for single-payer health plan
Assemblyman John Wisniewski, a Democratic gubernatorial candidate who has pledged to be New Jersey’s first “transportation governor,” also wants to create the state’s first single-payer healthcare system.
Nicholas Pugliese, The Record Read more

Prieto Not Fretting About NJ Speaker’s Race, but Won’t Count Votes
Facing a challenge to his leadership spot, Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto surrounded himself with liberal groups on Tuesday and rolled out legislation to beef up New Jersey’s paid family leave law.
Salvador Rizzo, Observer Read more

Warren County freeholder considers challenging Gottheimer for Congress
Jason Sarnoski and Josh Gottheimer shared the stage Saturday as Warren County Community College commencement speakers.
NJ.com Read more

The uncomfortable truth about race in N.J.’s top high schools
Daniel Zhao walked into the summer orientation program at his new high school four years ago and said he was immediately struck by the faces looking backing at him.
Kelly Heyboer, NJ.com Read more

Garden State Children Continue to Show Social Welfare Gains
New Jersey children continue to make progress on health and other social-welfare indicators, according to a new report by child advocates. They challenged their colleagues to use the data to fight potential cuts to federal funding and healthcare programs.
Lilo H. Stainton, NJSpotlight Read more

Judge halts Christie’s Atlantic City police layoffs
A Superior Court judge has temporarily blocked the State of New Jersey from unilaterally imposing layoffs and schedule changes on the Atlantic City Police Department.
Amy S. Rosenberg, Inquirer Read more

War of words over Trump hits N.J. Assembly race
The Jersey City teachers union is pulling its support of state Assemblyman Nick Chiaravalloti’s re-election bid two weeks before voters head to the polls, leading to a war of words between the union and billionaire David Tepper.
Terrence T. McDonald, The Jersey Journal Read more

Failures in Paterson special education confirmed
A state investigation has concluded that the Paterson school district failed to provide required therapy sessions to numerous students with disabilities this year.
Joe Malinconico, Paterson Press Read more

NJ Politics Digest: MacArthur Leaves Chair of GOP Moderates’ Caucus