The Ward Two Rivalry in Paterson.

Akhtaruzzaman Khalique Race Ruled a Tie in Paterson

This just in from Paterson:

The latest round of numbers are in and the Ward 2 collision between incumbent Councilman Shahin Khalique and Mohammed Aktharuzzaman has been ruled a tie.

Murphy

Murphy Fires Back At Scalise: You ‘Do Not Have The Authority To Conduct Oversight’

Responding to a Senate Select Committee GOP request for information from the state, Governor Murphy fired back at Rep. Scalise (letter embedded below).  Murphy informs Scalise that he lacks the authority to conduct oversight, and that this is his ‘full and final response’.

The Select Committee GOP Twitter handle tweeted in response: ‘What is he hiding? Why won’t Democrats join us in trying to get this information? 40% of U.S. deaths were nursing home residents; grieving families deserve answers.’

Murphy Hails Supreme Court Decision on DACA

Governor Phil Murphy this afternoon celebrated the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the DACA program.

“I cannot put it any more clearly,” Murphy said. “Our DREAMers are every bit as American as our four kids. I am proud the court saw the administration’s efforts to dismantle the program as the unlawful step that it was. …I am hopeful that Congress will further support our DREAMers with a path to citizenship.”

From USA Today:

In a deeply divided 5-4 opinion written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the court ruled that the Department of Homeland Security’s “arbitrary and capricious” process to end DACA was unlawful. That means that the Deferred Action for Childhood Protection (DACA) program created by President Barack Obama in 2012 will endure, allowing more than 650,000 DACA recipients to continue legally living and working in the U.S.

State Police forcibly remove Altman as Norcross sits.

Altman Allies Notch a Win in Ongoing War with Norcross

Declaring that these types of cases “could chill access to the courts,” Mercer County Assignment Judge May C. Jacobson rejected an attempt by the George Norcross-controlled South Jersey political machine to force progressives to pay six-figure attorney costs in election litigation.

New Jersey Working Families State Director Sue Altman released the following statement in response to Judge Jacobson’s ruling:

Today’s ruling is a resounding victory for ordinary citizens who, for too long, have been shut out of local politics by George Norcross’ political machine and its heavy-handed tactics.

Norcross’ political allies, including his personal attorney Bill Tambussi (previously Donald Trump’s attorney) went into today’s hearing trying to send a message that anyone daring to run against the machine could be liable for six-figure damages.

New Jersey Working Families and our allies refuse to be intimidated by these tactics. This extraordinary effort led by Tambussi and his colleagues to seek revenge against those daring to run for office was advanced by lawyers and paid for by South Jersey taxpayers and designed to chill political activity. But we will not back down — not today, not ever.

Judge Jacobson’s decision sends a message that these types of tactics won’t hold up in court. In fact, these proceedings will undoubtedly inspire more candidates to run for office, so that we can, once and for all, ensure there is opportunity for anyone seeking to get involved in the political process in South Jersey. It’s a tragedy we even need to state this as an aspiration, but it is clear times are changing in New Jersey and today was a win for democracy and the progressive movement.

Pamela Thomas-Fields’ Statement on Murphy’s Endorsement of Small

Running for mayor of Atlantic City, Pamela Thomas-Fields had this to say today in response to Governor Phil Murphy backing Marty Small for mayor:

“I maintain my commitment to the people of Atlantic City as the best candidate in this race to move our city forward with accountability and transparency that works for all residents. My grassroots support continues to reaffirm that I am the unbossed voice of the people and that will be clear on July 7. My campaign is not some of the same old same old and the establishment is clearly shaken.

“The truth is this is not personal, this is business. You only need to take a drive through the city to see that the status quo has not served the residents. I am the independent voice for change that will work to make Atlantic City healthy, wealthy and wise by bringing all stakeholders to the table to participate in our rebirth. If the voters are ready to take part in the wholesale initiative to improve our city then I am ready to be the voice that rights the ship. I urge voters to think forward for Atlantic City when completing their ballots, and to not cling to the complacency and corruption that has held us back for so long.”

The New Jersey Statehouse and Capitol Building In Trenton

Report: Former NJDOH Official Says He Was Fired For Refusing Testing Kit Request For Murphy COS Relatives

From Ted Sherman at NJ.com: “A high-ranking state Health Department official mysteriously let go at the height of the pandemic alleges the real reason he was fired was because he pushed back on a request to test relatives of Gov. Phil Murphy’s top aide for coronavirus, calling it a “complete waste of his time.”

According to a newly filed whistleblower lawsuit obtained by NJ Advance Media, Christopher Neuwirth — who served as assistant commissioner for the Division of Public Health, Infrastructure, Laboratories and Emergency Preparedness — claimed that he was ordered in late April to provide test kits to family members of George Helmy, the governor’s chief of staff, for COVID-19.”

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