Hi Christie Watch readers, I'm mostly away this week and probably the next two with moving, and some medical issues, but still around enough to do some sporadic reading and writing. I sporadically experience such debilitating pain it is difficult to concentrate enough to write. I spent most of the weekend in bed. Doctors haven't been able to figure it out, maybe it is fibromyalgia, or ME/CFS, in addition to depression, and arthritis, and bunches of stuff you don't even want to know about. But, not a stroke apparently, which is good. I woke up a month ago, with just the right-hand side of my body in agonizing pain, while the other side has been perfectly fine. It's been a little better, but this is the explanation for what my productivity has steadily dropped off by 70% over the last month. Maybe more at the current rate.
But even I wouldn't trade places with Governor Chris Christie who Aliyah Frumin of the Star-Ledger expresses faux sympathy for in his article today in MSNBC entitled, Chris Christie’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week. And he wasn't even indicted or arrested yet. This is good news for me, however, the whole time I was with doctors contemplating my possible imminent demise my biggest fear was I miss Governor Christie being arrested and hauled away by the FBI, and you all wouldn't save me any popcorn. I never thought I could be so happy to see that Christie hasn't been arrested yet.
Frumin reviews Christie's encounters with protesters on Tuesday, which I'll discuss more below. About 60 public school teachers showed up at an event on in Paterson to swear in Mayor Jose Torres, to boo, call him a liar, and "demand fair salaries and state contracts. One held up a sign saying “Christie’s staff gets 23% pay raises – Paterson school staff gets ZERO.” Frumin reports the crowd was so unfriendly Christie skipped the speech he had planned to give.
The Republican governor of New Jersey came under criticism on several fronts – from a veto on gun control legislation, to his controversial budget that reduced pension funding, to teacher salaries. On top of that, the state legislative committee investigating the lane closure scheme that has tarred Christie’s administration plans to subpoena up to a dozen more people, ensuring the scandal hasn’t dropped off state legislators’ radar just yet.
“There’s no denying it has been a very tough week for the governor,” said Brigid Harrison, a political science professor at Montclair State University. She added though – that especially in terms of Christie’s actions on guns and pension reform – that the politician may have the GOP presidential nomination in the back of his mind and that his moves this week are simply part of a longer-term, 2016 strategy.
Later, at a town hall meeting in Caldwell he had a belligerent encounter with an audience where he belittled protesting teachers joking that at least it was a good sign the teacher could read well enough to read their "statements" off of their cell phones.
Ha, this guy is like a volcano waiting to explode. If the DNC ever get worried he could make a comeback, all I'd need is a small contract to cover travel expenses and I'll bet I could get this guy to erupt well before the 2016 primaries. But, some are not expecting the first wave of indictments for at least his top 4 or 5 minions, possibly within a month of two, so our resources are probably better applied to Jeb Bush, or Mitt Romney who I believe is trying to set up a draft Romney campaign which he will "reluctantly" accept.
Just for fun though, we should make sure we have at least 60 or so protesters show up at all of his event, this time with all of them holding up their smart phones "reading" off chants in unison from a "live blog" saying "Liar, liar, pants on fire," "Christie must go," and we need some more signs like - "Yes, Christie we can read, which is why we know you lied on January 9!" Or, "we don't need to be able to read, to remember you lies, Christie!"
Well, I digress. Sorry, Chronic pain can turn me into a raging maniac. For some reason, pretending to organize campaigns to bring down ___ (fill in the blank with Republican bad guy of the day, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Karl Rove, John McCain, Mitt Romney, Rick Scott, Scott Walker, etc. is one of the few things that brings relief.
The Governor was also criticized for signing his $32.5 billion budget Monday, while using his veto to cut pension payments he promised to make, while rejecting a much more reasonable and fair tax increase on New Jersey's wealthiest residents proposed by Democrats.
Parents of children killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown Connecticut also railed against the governor on Thursday after he vetoed a gun control bill that would have banned magazines with more than 10 rounds of ammunition, down from the currently allowed 15 rounds. Hours before Christie’s decision, several family members of Sandy Hook victims delivered a petition to Christie signed by 55,000 individuals, asking him to reduce the legal limit of magazines.
Christie argued “mass violence will not end by changing the number of bullets loaded into a gun,” adding “I will not support such a trivial approach to the sanctity of human life, because this is not governing.”
To put some icing on the cake, the legislative investigative committee sent out 13 more subpoenas and set four dates in July for more testimony just when Republicans had hoped the committee had run out of things to do.
Marc Arco, of NJ Media writing for the New Star Ledger Chris Christie pushes pension reform, battles with protesters in wake of new NJ budget, provides us with more details about Christie's encounters with angry teachers on Tuesday.
Saying New Jersey could "drive into bankruptcy," Christie said he would spend the summer pitching a yet-to-be-revealed plan to curtail public worker benefits. Unions vowed to continue their fight, saying Christie created his own budget mess by mismanaging the state economy and making bad revenue projections.One source of protester's anger seemed to be Christie's "line item veto of tuition aid grants for undocumented students attending state schools."
Hours earlier, Christie was booed by Paterson teachers as he swore in the city’s new mayor.
About five dozen public school teachers wearing bright red T-shirts gathered along a metal partition a few hundred feet from the stage where Christie swore in Mayor Jose "Joey" Torres. They jeered every time the governor’s name was mentioned.Is it wrong that I'm smiling? In between grimacing?
"Christie’s gotta go!" they chanted. "Christie’s gotta go!"
The boos continued as the governor stepped to the podium to deliver the oath of office to Torres, a Democrat who won a third term despite not having the support of local party officials. Christie quickly said he wouldn’t be giving a speech.
"Liar!" the teachers yelled as he left the stage.