By Dan Jacobson, Publisher tri-CityNews
We’re pissed at Sean Kean.
Ever since the pussy voted against same sex marriage, we’ve had it with the always amiable – and consistently cowardly – Republican State Senator.
So we want Sean to do a little work for his reelection this year. Instead of cruising to victory in a district that hasn’t elected a Democrat in 22 years.
(And after the last Democrat they elected – some 28 year old clown with too little life experience to know what the hell he was doing – you can understand why voters have gone Republican since 1989. That last Democrat, of course, was me.)
When it comes to politics, this Publisher loves stirring up trouble. Got a long history of it as both a journalist and an elected official. Keeps people from getting too complacent. More importantly, it keeps me from getting bored.
So here’s a fun fact about Sean Kean that surprises every Republican we tell:
In his past elections, the Republican Senator has repeatedly been endorsed by the most powerful government employee unions in the state. Specifically, the NJEA and the CWA (the union representing state workers). Yup, the same unions in bitter battles against Republican Governors in places like Wisconsin, Ohio and – well, what do you know! – New Jersey.
Sean Kean sold out the Republican principles of limited government for those endorsements. And Republicans we’ve told don’t like it one bit. Kean has also been backed by the state AFL-CIO. They too are in alliance with the NJEA and the CWA in their battles against Republican Governor Chris Christie.
Don’t kid yourself. Those union endorsements come at a price for a Republican like Sean Kean. That price is his independence. Obviously, the Democratic Party lost theirs a long time ago with these groups. Everyone knows that.
But to see a Republican like Sean Kean do it is enough to…well, it’s enough to trigger a challenge in the Republican primary this June! Especially in these times.
After all, the recent events in Wisconsin have solidified the battle lines over the size of government and the power of government employees unions. Meanwhile, New Jersey’s Republican Governor is one of the leaders in the battle. And local Republicans overwhelmingly support Chris Christie in the fight.
Republican primary voters in Sean Kean’s district will not be happy with his choice of political allies – these unions are the most determined adversaries of their beloved Republican Governor! And that should make Sean Kean a big fat target for a Tea Party insurgent challenger in this June’s GOP primary.
Of course, Sean Kean made these alliances in past elections. Basically, when nobody was looking. And nobody cared. The game was always to lock up as much support as possible from wherever it came, principles be damned. It was all about winning elections. Nothing more.
That’s what voters are rebelling against today. Sean Kean is a typical politician – wonderfully amiable, a terrifically nice guy…and one who’s genetically incapable of ever rocking the boat. There’s your answer as to why nothing changes. We keep electing such friendly people from both parties. Sure, as far as the drek in Trenton goes, Sean Kean actually stacks up quite well. I’ll readily admit that. Then again, that’s additional evidence of why nothing gets done. He’s the standard.
Of course, I’m just stirring up controversy here. I love seeing Republicans fight each other. That’s why I want someone to run against Sean Kean in this year’s GOP primary. As a Democrat, I don’t think there’s anything inherently wrong with being backed by the NJEA or the CWA (the state workers union).
And all this demonizing of unionized government workers by Republicans nationwide is a bit much. It’s not like we’re talking about Al Qaeda here. These are our teachers, state workers and fellow citizens. The many government workers I’ve dealt with have been as serious about their job as those I’ve encountered in the private sector. Many even more so.
I really mean that. Sure, political hacks appointed to jobs because of their connections may be a different story. But my encounters with regular public employees from behind the scenes, when I’ve known the real story of what’s going on, have been almost uniformly positive. I’ve been an aide to elected officials, an elected official myself and I’ve represented local government entities as a lawyer. I also served as a municipal public defender. And I was a real reporter years ago and a fake one today. So I’ve had over 25 years of exposure to government workers. I’m positive on them.
The problem, however, is that the power of government employee unions today is way out of balance. We all know that. They’re too strong and have built too many advantages into the system with their power. Union leadership will never concede that. They can’t. They’d be out of a job as a union leader. So no one will speak the truth to their members.
The result has been unions who’ve thrown their political weight around, and everyone else resents it. Meanwhile, these unions are insulated and mostly talking to themselves about political issues. That only makes it worse. And politicians like Sean Kean have always given them what they want. That makes it doubly difficult to change the system.
A politician like Sean Kean can’t be trusted as an honest broker when it comes time to reform the state government. He can never be trusted to say no to the unions in those cases when that legitimately needs to be done. To Republicans, Sean Kean has cut his deal with the devil. He’s a rarity in the GOP – Kean is like a union-backed Democrat who’ll give in too much.
Here’s the funny part. I’ll bet Sean Kean will abandon his union allies if he thinks that’s the best way to keep his seat. Just watch what happens if a Republican primary challenger steps forward who can beat him. That will be fun to watch – and write about – when Kean inevitably back-pedals away from his union backers. Can’t wait to see their reaction too.
OK, so who can take on Sean Kean?
Got to be a Tea Party type. The obvious choice is Anna Little. She scored a stunning upset last year in the Republican primary over the establishment-backed Diane Gooch to run against Democratic Congressman Frank Pallone.
After losing to Pallone, this former Mayor of Highlands and former Monmouth County Freeholder announced she was running against him again. Recently, Little has talked about running for U.S. Senate, after Tea Party groups in other parts of the state suggested it.
That’s all nonsense. Little would lose again against the powerful Pallone. And forget the U.S. Senate. She doesn’t have the resources or recognition for that.
But Little could beat Sean Kean in this year’s primary for state Senate. Especially with his union baggage among Republican primary voters. And Little could then become the Tea Party’s darling in Trenton. Not a bad role to play as a Republican in the age of Governor Chris Christie. After a few years in that role, Little could then make a credible run for statewide office. (Oh man, are we creating another Frankenstein here – just so we have controversy to write about?)
Another choice to run against Sean Kean is powerful Republican blogger Art Gallagher out of Highlands. He was a key factor in Anna Little’s success last year, using his blog to relentlessly promote her candidacy and coordinate activity among Tea Party volunteers. However, there is a rift between Gallagher and Little these days.
We’re not sure what that rift means. But if Gallagher has significant support among the local Tea Party movement, then he can take a shot against Sean Kean. Gallagher is well-known among rank and file Republicans by his MoreMonmouthMusings blog. Even better, he’s been on the front page of the triCityNews. That’s much more powerful.
In the end, we don’t care who takes on Sean Kean. We just want some Republican to do it. And give the Senator a run for his NJEA and CWA money. (Sorry, we couldn’t resist that clever line!)
Of course, Sean Kean is always welcome to give his side of the story in the triCityNews. Hell, he can even take this column. I’m always happy to do less work. Sean won’t do it though. Too much of a pussy.
Pussy! Pussy! Pussy!
Although he’s a helluva nice guy. Aren’t they all?
So if anyone credible wants to take on Sean Kean let us know. This Democratic newspaper is always happy to provide a platform for Republicans to attack each other. Our front page awaits you!
After all, we’re the triCityNews. We’re here to help.
Editors note: MMM is thrilled that Dan Jacobson has finally consented to having his work published on the Internet. We never understood why Dan doesn’t like the Internet, after all, Al Gore invented it! We’re honored that the publisher of the only profitable newspaper in the universe chose MMM to stir things up.
In addition to publishing the tri-CityNews, Jacobson is a former Assemblyman from the 11th legislative district.