At Baraka’s “North Jersey Explosion” party, Kenney says “I’m interested” in blowing up LD 29

By Mark Bonamo | 11/20/14

PolitickerNJ

ATLANTIC CITY – The New Jersey League of Municipalities conference is known for its semi-staid cocktail parties. It can also be known for a good time. Newark Mayor Ras Baraka’s Wednesday night party, held at Dusk inside of Caesars, was on ’til the break of dawn.

Essex County politicos hit the dance floor hard as DJ Nice played old-school rap songs like “Rapper’s Delight” by the Sugarhill Gang while co-host and rap legend Eric B presided. Essex County Democratic Chairman LeRoy Jones and Essex County Clerk Chris Durkin shimmied side by side. The mayor’s chief of staff and brother, Amiri Baraka, Jr., and Deputy Mayor Rahaman Muhammad, a strong ally of both the Baraka family and of organized labor, worked the crowd. A dance troupe from Montreal, straight from performing at the Tropicana, injected even more chaos into the strobe-lit scene.

Politics did momentarily invade during a PolitickerNJ bar-side interview with Alturrick Kenney, mentioned by sources as one of the potential candidates in a possible 2015 Democratic primary fight in Legislative District 29.

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LD29 Gutcheck: signs now point to Democratic Primary

By Max Pizarro | 11/07/14

PolitickerNJ

 

Accelerated fundraising efforts by forces affiliated with Newark Mayor Ras Baraka suggest that the mayor’s political allies want to move forward with a plan to run primary candidates against LD29 incumbents Assemblywoman L. Grace Spencer and Assemblywoman Eliana Pinor Marin.

Sources say the likely challengers will be Alturrick Kenney and Pat Council.

Kenney is a senior consultant at Impact Public Affairs and former School Advisory Board member; Council the director of neighborhood services and a past member of the School Advisory Board. He ran unsuccessfully earlier this year for an at-large council seat.

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Monmouth Poll: 53% of NJ voters approve of Christie’s Ebola response

By Politicker Staff | 11/06/14

PolitickerNJ

 

Gov. Chris Christie gets better marks than the federal government for his handling the Ebola situation, with the vast majority of voters agreeing with the state’s move to quarantine a nurse from Maine, according to this morning’s Monmouth University Poll.

Most say that the actual threat Ebola poses to the Garden State is no more than a minor one, but a 1-in-4 minority fear that it may present a serious risk.

Practically every New Jersey voter has been following news about Ebola, including 88% who have heard a lot about the issue.  About 1-in-4 (26%) believe that Ebola poses a major public health threat to  New Jersey, while a 7-in-10 majority say it poses only a minor threat (48%) or no threat at all (21%).  There are no notable demographic differences in who thinks Ebola is more or less of a public health risk.

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Essex County election results 2014

By Jessica Mazzola and Bill Wichert | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
on November 04, 2014

Here are the unofficial results of Tuesday's local government elections and school elections in Essex County. Winning candidates are designated with a check mark. Asterisks denote incumbents.

Please be sure to refresh. Results will be updated on this file throughout the evening.

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Will the 2,500 West Orange residents make their voices heard today?

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By Owen Petrie | Essex County Politics
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November 4, 2014

What does the outcome of the West Orange mayoral election mean for the at least 2,500 concerned residents who signed a petition seeking the repeal of an ordinance that would issue general obligation bonds totaling $6.3Million taxpayer dollars to the developer of the Edison property on Main Street, Prism Capital Partners, LLC. 

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Agenda: NJ Test Scores, Newark Super To Take Center Stage

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Following Belmar blowup, questions arise over limits of anger as a Christie power tool

By Mark Bonamo | 10/30/14

PolitickerNJ

 

BELMAR – The late Joe Strummer of The Clash voiced an idea in the 1980 song “Clampdown” that some say has become a regular theme in New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s political song book: “Let fury have the hour, anger can be power. Do you know that you can use it?”

But when Christie used anger on Wednesday in Belmar to address a heckler, demanding that the detractor on his Hurricane Sandy efforts “sit down and shut up,” the moment led PolitickerNJ to ask some statewide political observers a critical question. With his Garden State poll numbers sagging to an all-time favorability rating low of 42 percent, has Christie’s native Jersey brashness and flashes of anger reached the limit of political effectiveness, both locally and nationally?

“The governor has always defended his behavior, saying that this is his personality and he’s not going to compromise his personality for politics. But that aspect of his personality has not resonated with every demographic group in the state of New Jersey,” said Brigid Harrison, professor of political science and law at Montclair State University. “There are certain people who find his brashness charming, and there are others who find it objectionable.”

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Half-Truths, Unequal Funding Define Booker-Bell Race for U.S Senate Seat

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In Heavily Democratic 10th, Incumbent Payne Looks to Have Things Locked Up

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U.S. Senate race: Booker defends record, points to legislative accomplishments despite short time in Senate

By Mark Bonamo | 10/28/14

PolitickerNJ

JERSEY CITY – U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) defended himself against the argument that, despite wide leads in both the polls and sizes of campaign war chests against Republican challenger Jeff Bell, he has yet to achieve a notable legislative victory.

“We’ve been getting traumatic brain injury centers to [stay] open,” said Booker on Tuesday, referring to his co-authorship of measure that sets up a program to help veterans with such types of injuries that was included in a larger bill passed into law. “We’ve been helping hundred of families in Cumberland County qualify for loan stabilization. We’ve been helping get grants to create jobs in our state.

“On top of all that, we’ve fought some good fights down in Washington,” Booker added, noting his participation in the push to increase the minimum wage as well as his work on comprehensive criminal justice reform, an initiative on which the prominent Democrat has collaborated with Republican U.S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky.

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