Christie repeatedly bashes NJEA in S.C. for running $140M 'political slush fund'

By Matt Arco | NJ Advance Media for
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on June 03, 2015


GREENVILLE, S.C. — Gov. Chris Christie is relying on a familiar foe as he courts conservative Republicans in the South in an attempt to shore up support ahead of a likely 2016 presidential campaign: New Jersey teacher unions.

The governor has railed against the leaders of New Jersey's largest teachers' union at least twice so far since kicking off a two-day tour Wednesday of the early-primary voting state of South Carolina. Without calling the New Jersey Education Association out by name, Christie accused the union of managing a $140 million "political slush fund to award their friends and punish their enemies."

He also promised GOP voters that teacher unions will be the largest donors to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the 2016 Democratic frontrunner, in the upcoming presidential election.

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Hespe Justifies Review of Common Core, Suggests Changes May Not Be Drastic

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Ex-freeholder, state senator's husband now on Newark payroll


By Dan Ivers | NJ Advance Media for 

NEWARK — One half of an Essex County power couple has once again found a place working in the halls of local government.

Samuel Gonzalez, a former Essex County freeholder and husband of state Sen. Teresa Ruiz (D-Essex), is now working in North Ward Councilman Anibal Ramos' office as an executive secretary, a title officials said is equivalent to a chief of staff position. 

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Breaking News: Essex County Democratic Chair, LeRoy Jones, allegedly punches elderly campaign worker in the face. More to come. has obtained a video that appears to show Leroy Jones, the Essex County Democratic Party Chairman, punch an elderly East Orange resident in the face in a senior citizen building on June 2 of this year.

Jones can be seen entering the lobby of 777 Springdale Avenue where he encounters Bill Graves, 75, a retired Army Veteran. The men appear to exchange words before Jones twice strikes Graves about his face with his fist. Graves, who suffers from severe glaucoma and who is completely blind in one eye and legally blind in the other, was taken to the local Veteran Administration Hospital where he was treated for injuries to his face and eye.

Leroy Jones was not arrested at the scene but was later charged with disorderly conduct.

The case has been moved from Essex County to Hudson County

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Explainer: Common Core State Standards -- What Is Christie Walking Away From?

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Real Test After Christie’s Call to Drop Common Core: What Happens Next

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Almost No Money to Clean Up Paulsboro Contamination in Exxon Mobil Settlement

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Chris Christie Ready to Desert Common Core Standards



May 29, 2015

Gov. Chris Christie said on Thursday that New Jersey could abandon Common Core education standards, changing his position as he tries to reconcile policies that he embraced as the moderate governor of a blue state with his bid to win over conservative voters in the presidential contests.

Mr. Christie, who two years ago proclaimed himself among the governors “leading the charge” for the Common Core, is widely believed to be preparing to run for president and is seeking to gain traction after the George Washington Bridge lane closing scandal.

In his comments on Thursday, Mr. Christie appeared to be trying to straddle both sides of the issue, one that has become unexpectedly thorny for Republican presidential hopefuls.

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When Race and Drugs Intersect, Children More Likely to Enter Foster Care

By Sarah Gonzalez : Reporter, WNYC/NJPR

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Black children in New Jersey are more than twice as likely as white children to be removed from their parents when drugs are at least one factor in their child welfare cases.


The New Jersey Division of Child Protection and Permanency can come into your life with one phone call.

“A person may call in and say, ‘I saw a 2-year-old outside on the porch. I think there’s marijuana use or drug use occurring in the home,’” said Amy Vasquez, a lawyer who represents parents in child protective cases.

“With that the Division goes out and investigates and makes a determination whether or not to remove the children,” she said.

Sometimes the phone call comes from a hospital.


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Christie says he favors expanding casinos to northern N.J.

By Claude Brodesser-Akner | NJ Advance Media for
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on May 27, 2015

TRENTON — Gov. Chris Christie says he'd be in favor of approving a recently announced partnership between the Florida-based Hard Rock gaming company and the Meadowlands Racetrack — as long as tax revenues from the venture would help pay to revitalize ailing Atlantic City.

Speaking on his monthly call in radio show, Christie said that while no one had presented the proposal to him, he had heard "rumblings" that the Legislature planned to place the idea on the November ballot for a statewide referendum on expanding gaming to the northern part of the state, and said he'd be in favor of such a move.

"I have absolutely no problem with that question going on the ballot right away," Christie said, "The competition's only going to grow, in New York, in particular. And so if we could plant our flag firmly in the ground, I think it would make the project even more successful."

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