Governor Chris Christie stumping in Iowa during Election 2012.
Another new poll (this one from CNN) dropped Tuesday showing Chris Christie leading the GP 2016 hypothetical primary pack by 1-point, Save Jerseyans. The other “top” contenders – Rand Paul and Mike Huckabee – are tied at 12%.
I’m starting to loathe these polls for a few different reasons (no offense intended, CNN, ’cause you’re hardly the only offenders).
For starters, in a crowded primary, the state-by-state primary/caucus polls are what matters.
I suppose you need to take your shots when you can, Save Jerseyans, and it’s all too easy to do it in the social media age.
Hours after RGA Chairman Chris Christie dismissed NY GOP gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino as a “lost cause” and Astorino countered by calling for Christie’s resignation, Texas Governor Rick Perry (considered to be a possible Christie presidential primary rival) gave the dissed New York Republican a Texas-sized hug in Colorado:
Republican governors are in Aspen, Colorado for Thursday night’s McCloskey Speaker Series at the Aspen Institute featuring Governor Rick Scott of Florida, Governor Sam Brownback of Kansas, Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina, Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin and, yes, Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey who spent Wednesday in Colorado campaigning for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez.
Governor Chris Christie once again defended his magazine ban veto on Monday, Save Jerseyans, fending off a horde of hungry media ghouls during a campaign swing in Connecticut on behalf of the RGA’s gubernatorial candidate:
Can I be brutally frank with you for a moment? As if you expected anything less…
Gov. Christie was absolutely correct in vetoing the Legislature’s magazine-limit bill, despite Sandy Hook-parent Hugo Rojas’ protestations to the contrary. The bill was not only trivial, but it was cynical to boot since it did nothing but regurgitate the long-standing agenda of gun control advocates in New Jersey without addressing what really was at the heart of the Newtown, CT tragedy: defenseless children and teachers left at the mercy of a deranged individual who should have been locked up.
If you want to solve problems, the first key is correctly identifying them, not trotting out tired, politically correct memes that pander to sentimentality. It’s obvious that a big problem at Sandy Hook – a problem lawmakers in New Jersey ignore and perpetuate today – is defenseless schools.
Another problem is the hands-off attitude taken by local and state officials and law enforcement against mentally ill people who, like Adam Lanza, have a long, documented and scary track record of violent behavior yet are allowed to walk the streets.
Ignoring the real problems in favor of political pandering is what the Legislature did with the magazine-limit bill. Gov. Christie was right to veto it, and Mr. Rojas’ is mistaken in his criticism.
Calling a bill that would have reduced permitted ammunition magazine sized from 15 rounds to 10 “reform in name only,” Governor Chris Christie conditionally vetoed A2006 this afternoon.
In his conditional veto message, Christie said the bill follows the well worn path of empty rhetoric, political self-promotion and polarizing intolerance in the face of violent crimes committed with guns:
“Difficult choices are brushed aside in favor of empty rhetoric. Uncomfortable topics are left unexplored, while easy soundbites and videoclips are packaged for consumption. Appropriate empathy for victims, and their suffering survivors, blurs with politics and elected officials’ self-promotion to create a polarizing intolerance. We ignore the hard for the expedient, the controversial for the safely familiar, and the costly for those cheaply recycled answers that never really address the root causes.”
Christie sent the legislation back to the General Assembly as a bill that he says addresses violence by fixing critical short comings and crack in the mental healthcare system.
Both sides of the aisle have big problems with Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) testing, Save Jerseyans, so during an under-reported exchange at last week’s town hall meeting in Haddon Heights, Governor Chris Christie told a teacher participant that he’d pitch a fresh proposal to address those concerns in 7-10 days.
The stakes are growing as the landscape darkens. New Jersey is facing extreme fiscal pressure as another budget fails to meet basic obligations without borrowing, and the Republican 2016 prospect is hoping to roll out a new pension and benefits reform package soon, too, all while presidential speculation and Bridgegate rumors keep Trenton on edge and his Administration off-balance.
It’s an distressingly imperfect work product, Save Jerseyans, but it’d stink a lot worse if a bought-and-sold tool of the public sector unions like Jon Corzine was still at the helm.
That’s the best I can say for this $32.5 billion FY 2015 budget signed by Governor Christie after hours on Monday evening.
Yes, it’s a little bit leaner than last year’s. He did cut $1 billion from the legislature’s proposal including $7.5 million for “family planning” services; the pension system nevertheless remains underfunded despite the Governor’s record payment, and we’re still spending WAAAAY too much money.
Folks, the FY 2015 budget debate will conclude – or at least reach its climax – when Governor Chris Christie signs/line-item veto(es) the legislature’s work product, presumably sometime between now and the 4th of July.
This episode has shown us one thing: we need to cut some budget fat, or we are going to be doing this dance again and again, year after year. Not one-time stuff, either; we need permanent cuts that are going to last and result in permanent savings.
Here are four of my own for your kind consumption as Governor Christie weighs his options. Because, as I recently pointed out, a millionaires tax is not going to solve our woes. This isn’t a comprehensive list; I do not claim to have all the answers, but it’s my hope that, by reading this, decision-makers’ old thinking caps powered up….
Our Blogger-in-Chief Matt Rooney drops by ‘Common Sense Radio’ with Sue Ann Penna on Saturday, June 28th at 10:00 a.m., Save Jerseyans, to discuss the #njbudget, pensions, tax proposals and related topics that affect your bottom line as a New Jersey resident.
A woman protests Governor Christie’s pension payment walk-back at his 6/25/14 Haddon Heights Town Hall (photo credit: Alyssa LaFage)
I thoroughly enjoyed attending my first Christie town hall in a long time on Wednesday, Save Jerseyans, though to be 100% honest with you, the pall of a budget battle palpably hung heavily over Governor Chris Christie’s 122nd such gathering hosted at an elementary school in suburban Haddon Heights.
Still, the Governor’s opening comments to the 300-ish attendees were less optimistic and upbeat than usual - the fictional Marty McFly might’s said “heavy” – and the tenor of the day’s discussion didn’t get too much more chipper from there on out despite his best attempts to mix in a little humor (and he did get some laugh lines as per usual). Also noticeably absent were any of the Governor’s situational allies in the South Jersey Democrat Machine; only Camden County Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli, Jr. was in attendance, a staunch support of police consolidated backed by the Administration, but he politely got up and left half way through the event.
No Steve Sweeney, nor Dana Redd, nor Donald Norcross (even though Heights is in his district).
A sign of the mood 45 minutes north on I-295? Christie was stoic, sober yet undeniably fatalistic about the next steps in the choreographed budget drama. “…[the Democrats] passed yesterday a whole bunch of these taxes in committee,” Christie explained, providing a little background for his audience. “I assume they are going to pass them tomorrow in the full senate and assembly.”