That was the theme of Governor Chris Christie’s keynote address at this year’s New Jersey Chamber of Commerce-hosted ‘Walk to Washington’ dinner in Washington, D.C., Save Jerseyans, and the Big Guy didn’t mince words when he discussed the ramifications of the Assembly’s failure to pass a renewed arbitration cap.
This wasn’t a fluffy “thanks for the invite” speech, although he did take the time to crack a few perfunctory jokes related to select attendees.
Following an April 7th meeting where the Delaware River Bay Authority (DRBA) Board of Commissioners voted three-year contracts containing 1.9% salary increases and 10% healthcare premium sharing, Governor Chris Christie stepped in on Tuesday morning and lowered the boom by vetoing the minutes.
“The DRBA is well aware that New Jersey state employees and many local employees have already moved to a higher level of healthcare cost sharing than what is paid by DRBA employees today and that there must be equity in these times of fiscal restraint to protect taxpayers and tollpayers alike,” said Governor Christie. “The DRBA’s attempted action here is clearly contrary to that principle and inconsistent with the contracts public employees are living under in New Jersey today. For these reasons, I am vetoing these inappropriate actions.”
Governor Christie has taken similar action in the past against various independent authorities around the state which he’s referred to, quite correctly, as New Jersey’s “shadow government,” but it’s brutally clear that true reform will remain elusive while these authorities remain in existence. They’re out-of-control…
In case you’ve missed it, Save Jerseyans, the Governor’s $34+ billion FY 2015 budget proposal is drawing flack from liberals and conservatives alike for including “revenue enhancements” such as a brand new tax electronic cigarettes and an expansion of our state’s sales tax to include online retailers.
The company line is that these aren’t tax hikes because the state would simply apply preexisting rates to previously exempt items; for example, electronic cig users would pay the same tax rate as regular smokers do for their regular cigarettes.
One prominent conservative legislator disagrees, Save Jerseyans. You know him. Jay Webber (R-Morris), a member of the General Assembly and former NJ GOP chairman, recently told NJ.com’s Matt Friedman that he doesn’t see the distinction between enhancements and hikes:
Governor Christie directly appointed dozens of state officials on Holy Thursday, Save Jerseyans, meaning these new or reappointed individuals don’t require the Senate’s consent to start working:
STATE BOARD OF EXAMINERS OF HEATING, VENTILATING, AIR CONDITIONING AND REFRIGERATION CONTRACTORS Master HVACR Contractors Appoint Kevin S. Clark (Galloway, Atlantic) Appoint the Honorable William C. Barham (Monmouth Beach, Monmouth)
Executive Branch of State Government Representative Appoint the Honorable Thomas C. Pitcherello (Bordentown, Burlington)
This video is from Tuesday’s town hall meeting in Franklin Township; Governor Christie’s fighting to save the arbitration cap that was central to his property tax reform legacy before Assembly Democrats allowed it to expire two weeks ago.
Context: Governor Christie told Diane Sawyer last month that “they love me in Iowa,” Save Jerseyans, but a new Suffolk University poll out Wednesday strongly suggested that the steady drumbeat of Bridgegate news, manufactured or not, is close to ending the presidential aspirations of the man who these same polls reported could give the GOP its best chance of defeating Hilldawg in 2016.
A Quinnipiac Poll released this morning indicates that, despite the beating he has been taking in the local and national media since January, Governor Chris Christie has higher approval ratings than President Barack Obama, Senator Bob Menendez and Senator Cory Booker, among New Jersey voters.
Quinnipiac didn’t spin the poll that way in their narrative, but that is what the numbers indicate. Most of the media coverage about this poll will be negative for Christie. Too many reporters and editors read the spin and not the numbers.
There is bad news for Christie in this poll. His approval rating has dropped to 49-44% since January when it was 55-38%.
82% of Republicans and 54% of Independents approve of Christie’s job performance. Only 23% of Democrats give the Guv love.
The Governor’s bully rating is higher than ever before. Voters are now evenly split 48-48 on whether he’s a leader or a bully. In January they said he was more of a leader by 54-40 margin.
56% of voters think the Mastro Report, the internal investigation commissioned by the Governor’s Office that exonerated Christie from any involvement in the Bridgegate scandal was a “whitewash.” Voters are split 46-46 over whether the legislative investigation into Bridgegate lead by Assemblyman John Wisniewski and Senator Loretta Weinberg is a legitimate investigation or a political witch-hunt.
Voters have a net negative impression of the State Legislature that crosses all party lines. Republicans disapprove of legislature 40-45, Democrats 40-43 and Independents 33-53. The Legislature’s overall approval numbers are negative 36-48.
Did you catch what that broom-less witch Joy Behar said?
Hard to watch. I know.
Toast or not, Save Jerseyans, the Guv is under no obligation to butter himself and hop into the toaster oven. Don’t do their job for them, Governor Christie. Stay away from this crap for the foreseeable future. It’s not working for you, but if you stop going, you’ll not only be less exposed, but we won’t even know the event happened for want of coverage since you’re the only story! It’s a win-win…
“He doesn’t always try to persuade you with reason,” Kean said. “He makes you feel that your life’s going to be very unhappy if you don’t do what he says.” He added that one of Christie’s flaws “is that he makes enemies and keeps them. As long as you’re riding high, they’ll stay in the weeds, because they don’t want to get in your way. But you get in trouble, they’ll all come out of the weeds, and come at you.” Although I didn’t ask, Kean told me that if Christie ran for President he wouldn’t necessarily endorse him. “I haven’t decided whether I’m going to support him or not,” Kean said. “There are a lot of people I don’t know that well”—he mentioned John Kasich, Scott Walker, and Jeb Bush, among other potential 2016 Republican Presidential nominees—“and I’d like to get to know them better.”
More than a few significant GOP donors believe Jeb Bush should be the Republican Party’s 2016 presidential if Governor Chris Christie is unable to recover from Bridgegate. These money men and women would tell you that they’re not so much concerned by problems with the Bush brand as with polls showing most other GOP potential nominees (Paul, Rubio, Cruz, etc.) trailing Hillary Clinton by wide margins.
With all of that in mind, the former Florida governor went out of his way to make it abundantly clear over the weekend at an event celebrating the 25th anniversary of his father’s administration that his views – on issues ranging from illegal immigration to “winning the election vs. the argument” – are very much in-line with Christie’s own (if not a large segment of the base):