Murray Sabrin, PhD raised questions about Senate President Steve Sweeney’s potentially conflicting roles as a labor leader and state legislator months before he considered running for U.S. Senate. If his ethics complaint is politically motivated, the complaint itself was not made to boost his Senate candidacy. But the fact that he is shedding a public light on it now, over three months after he first raised the issue, is an effort to raise his public profile to support his candidacy.
But if Sabrin thought his efforts against Sweeney would help him garner support with the GOP establishment for the Senate nomination, he is mistaken. Former Acting Govenor/Senate President Don DiFrancesco, still a power player in the establishment, defended Sweeney in the Chasing New Jersey report (video below) that brought Sabrin’s complaint to public light.
Sabrin says that Sweeney’s employment as General Vice President of the International Association of Iron Workers, where he earns over $200,000 per year, is a conflict with his role as Senate President because he lobbies senators that he overseas.
DiFrancesco told Chasing New Jersey’s Sibile Marcellus that Sweeney is “not lobbying the legislature, he’s in government relations.”
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Posted: March 6th, 2014 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: ethics, Murray Sabrin, Stephen Sweeney | Tags: Chasing New Jersey, Don DiFrancesco, International Association of Iron Workers, John Wallace, Joint Committee on Ethical Standards, Maci Levin Hochman, Murray Sabrin, Sibile Marcellus, Steve Sweeney | Comments Off on Sabrin Filed Ethics Complaint Against Sweeney For Lobbying
Star Ledger reporter Ginger Gibson, a member of the Statehouse press corps tell me she is Mexican:
I saw your piece about the diversity of the press corps. I just wanted to let you know, I’m Mexican. So it’s not all white guys in the press corps, there are some minorities. Just wanted to make sure you knew that.
I never would have guessed that, given Gibson’s fair skin and last name. Another lesson about assumptions.
Yet the point of my piece still stands. The press corps is far from 40% minority, and the Ledger editorial board is still FOS.
On Saturday The Star Ledger published an editorial calling on Governor Chris Christie to appoint minorities to the State Supreme Court.
The Ledger is lamenting the fact that since Christie took office both minorities who were on the court, Justice John Wallace and Justice Roberto Rivera-Sota, have left the bench. For the first time in twenty years there are no minorities on the court. “And yet more than 40 percent of the state’s population is black, Hispanic, or Asian.”
The Ledger took the diversity theme a bit further this morning with an article that sites a Star Ledger analysis which concludes Governor Christie is favoring white middle class senior citizens in selecting communities to host his Town Hall meetings.
This got me thinking about the diversity of the New Jersey Media. Is the New Jersey press corp comprised of 40% of African Americans, Hispanics and Asians? Not even close.
From my experience, without doing an extensive MMM analysis like the Ledger did of Christie’s Town Halls, journalism may be the least diverse industry in New Jersey.
The State House press corp? Overwhelmingly white.
NJ.com, The Star Ledger’s website? Only one African American columnist who writes almost exclusively about Newark.
Giving credit where it is due, Gannett’s papers have a diverse group of reporters, on the local levels. They have an African American Executive Editor, Hollis Towns, at The Asbury ParkPress. Their Statehouse Buerau? Five white guys. They would be wise to make Jane Roh part of that team.
News12 has a diverse staff.
So what is with the progressives at The Star Ledger? Should they be telling the Governor to take the speck out of his eye while they have a log in their own?
Are the folks at The Ledger hypocrites or has Gannett scooped up all the good minority writers?
I don’t know for sure, but I tend to think they’re full of poop. They’re attempting to set the agenda for Christie’s Supreme Court appointments by using the race card. As part of the vast progressive conspiracy, the Ledger likes an activist court that requires billions of dollars to be flushed into urban schools that produce morally unacceptable results in educating minority children. If they can convince the public that race should be a criteria for selecting a Supreme Court Justice, rather than scholarship, judicial temperment and a philosphical committement to interpreting law, rather than writing it from the bench, The Ledger figures they can thrwart Governor Christie from “turning Trenton upside down” anymore than he already has.
The Legislature is very likely to remain in Democratic control after the coming election, which limits severely the reforms Governor Christie can make over the rest of his term. Given the legislative map, a second Christie term will most likely also have a Democratic legislature. That he will have the responsiblity to appoint the majority of the court in his first term, to reshape the court as he promised, will result in the real legacy of the Christie administration.
The Star Ledger’s lip service for diversity is nothing more then getting ready for that coming political battle.
Posted: September 19th, 2011 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Abbott Ruling, Asbury Park Press, Chris Christie, NJ Media | Tags: Chris Christie, Education, Gannett, Jane Roh, John Wallace, Roberto Rivera-Soto, Star Ledger, State Supreme Court, Town Hall Meetings | 9 Comments »