By Art Gallagher
Former Assemblyman and trCityNews publisher Dan Jacobson, a Democrat, says he’s seriously considering a challenge to Senator Sean Kean in the Republican primary and that it is this blog’s fault that he’s considering it.
Good. I’ll take responsibility for that.
This blog has never been about preaching to the choir, even though as Governor Christie says, preaching to the choir makes them sing better. Democrats and Independents have always been welcome here. I’m proud to have the only conservative blog with a link on Blue Jersey‘s blog roll. I’m proud when morons on the right who can’t count call me Arlen or a RINO. I’m proud that Kathy Baratta can’t stay away, sprays some insults in the comments every now and then before going back to her little websites to rant about me. If I’m not tweaking or out and out angering members of the mainstream media and members of the political establishment, on both sides of the isle, I’m not doing my job.
I think it is weird when friends, acquaintances or readers I don’t know personally tell me, often apologetically, that they don’t agree with me, but that they respect me and still enjoy the site. I think it is weird that the guy I ran against for council in Highlands years ago still takes it personally that I had the audacity to do so. I think personal animosity and vitriol over differences of opinions is weird. I think it is weird that Democrats and Republicans alike are offended that Democratic Chairman Vic Scudiery’s companies advertise on this site. It’s sad that people can’t understand how Vic and I can be both friends and political adversaries. It’s not sad for Vic or I. It’s sad that so many people will only relate to people they agree with on everything and that differences of opinion can threaten a releationship. It is weird that agreeing to disagree is a big deal. It is almost as if differences of opinion is the new racism in terms of how we thoughtlessly separate ourselves from each other.
I’m especially proud that MMM is Dan Jacobson’s favorite blog and that he has chosen to participate here. Dan and I have roughly the same size readerships. His might be a bit larger than mine, but mine is more committed. While we come at it from different angles, with different styles and mediums, Dan and I both seek to wake people up, challenge the status quo, shape opinion and influence action.
But enough about I why I publish Dan’s work here and why those of you who only relate to people you see eye to eye with are ripping yourselves off. Let’s talk politics and piss some people off.
First, when it comes right down to it, I don’t think Dan will challenge Kean in the primary. He’s too much of kitten. Kitten, kitten, kitten! He wouldn’t even call Sean Kean and talk to him. Even though it is painless to do so. You leave a message and Sean doesn’t call back. What’s so hard about that? Dan’s such a kitten that I wonder if really ever called former Red Bank Mayor Ed McKenna. For years Dan complained that McKenna wouldn’t return his calls.
Secondly, Dan’s candidacy would cause a Constitutional crisis. Using his newspaper to promote his candidacy would raise interesting and challenging issues regarding New Jersey’s campaign finance laws. Dan could be required to disclose his advertisers as campaign contributors on his ELEC reports and return ad fees/donations that exceed the limits. Some advertisers have already spent more than the allowable campaign contribution amounts and would have to pull their ads for the remainder of the campaign. Dan is just the guy to take campaign finance laws all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, accept for one thing….he’s too much of a kitten to do it. That and he’s not pissed off enough about Kean’s anti-marriage equality vote to put his paper out of business.
Third, he won’t win. Sure, based upon the 2009 turnout a victory looks to be possible, but all Sean Kean has to do to win is spend a little bit of the SEIU/CWA/NJEA money he has collected on a post card and robo call and he’ll turn out more than enough voters in Wall Township to crush Jacobson district wide. Just because he can, Sean would get lawn signs and a troop of volunteers to distribute them for overkill. Dan might spring for a few signs and ask his paper boy to deliver them to stores that distribute the triCityNews, but the store owners won’t put them up. Now he’s spending money for signs and losing ad dollars.
Still, I hope I’m wrong. I hope Dan is not too much of a kitten, kitten, kitten and that he goes for it. Not because I want my friend to go broke (he’ll have to pay in advance if he wants an ad here!), but because Dan’s readers need to hear his message about goverment employee unions:
For years, I’ve criticized the Democratic Party for being clueless on economic policy. Becoming a subsidiary of the unions destroyed us. We lost our independence, and the ability to shrink the government and reduce taxes when needed. That’s why angry Democrats write in calling me a Republican.
Call me crazy. But if a government employees union has the right to collective bargaining, it’s absurd that they can elect those who sit across the bargaining table. And it’s absurd that they can elect those who enact the rules for that bargaining.
Tell you what: Government employee unions should not be allowed to collect mandatory dues – and then use those dues to elect those running the government that employs them. That gives them way too much power. That’s the root problem right now. It’s why collective bargaining can’t be fair. It’s why everything is out of whack. If these unions want to form their own political action committees and convince members to voluntarily contribute, so be it. That’s democracy. But today’s situation is ridiculous.
When I write stuff like that many of my Democratic readers call me names, just like my idealogical right wing readers do when they don’t agree with me, and dismiss my arguments. Even many of my Republican readers are affraid of that argument, given the power of the unions in NJ. They need to hear from Dan and others too.
Maybe Dan can skirt the ELEC issues by waging a write in campaign. I don’t know, he should ask a lawyer who knows stuff like that.
But the message is important and needs to get out.