Rice of Murphy: ‘Some People are Trying to Set Him up’ Before he Becomes Governor


TRENTON – An early backer of Phil Murphy for Governor, veteran state Senator Ronald L. Rice approves of the fact that the former Goldman Sachs executive donated money to the NAACP to fight the evils of civil rights injustices, and believes Murphy’s in the contest with clear eyes – but wants to make sure the candidate remains alert.

“He understands that New Jersey’s a corrupt state,” the senator said of the Democratic candidate for governor. “George Norcross still wants to control the world. I would hope that we have a governor who can govern. I think Murphy will be a fine governor. Having said that, I think some people are trying to set him up before he becomes governor.”

Rice pointed to the $300 million statehouse renovation plan presented by Governor Chris Christie, the governor’s anti-opioid addiction campaign and other late-in-the-game initiatives, including his attacks on Horizon, motivated, Rice said, by Norcross’ interests and relationships.

“I think the drug campaign Christie’s on could shut down struggling drug treatment facilities and/or put them under the umbrella of private facilities run by his friends [John J.] Clancy and [Bill] Palatucci,”* Rice said. “I just see some disingenuousness on the part of those who didn’t get elected to the office they wanted.”

For all his expressed opposition to Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3), Rice wasn’t ready to say he favors giving Sweeney the heave ho off the senate throne.

“I know the senate president wants to remain… but he’s never been my problem. He has not treated African American members fairly, in my judgment. But the problem is not Steve Sweeney. My concern has been George Norcross, who is bad for government,” the senator said.

As for the fact that he is running unopposed this year, Rice, who has served in the state senate since 1986, said, “I’m not a clergyman but God has blessed me with a mission. It’s not a question of being defined by those others who may challenge me or run against me, but by those I serve and their needs. I’m blessed to go back, but I am not taking the voters for granted.

*Editor’s Note: John Clancy died earlier this year. Bill Palatucci has been at Gibbons, P.C. since 2012.


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7 responses to “Rice of Murphy: ‘Some People are Trying to Set Him up’ Before he Becomes Governor”

  1. If you are not part of Norcross and Sweeneys click you can forget there are no jobs down here to help people make a real decent living and unless you’re with them and part of their little regime working in a little Biette union jobs that they have in the state and all those jobs are controlled by Sweeney in Norcross if you act up or don’t agree with them you get fired for no reason

  2. Sweeney has Used African Americans lied and mistreated people who had state job and had them terminated. He threw Minir under the bus with south jersey Nj.com for running against Norcross. Rice better wise up. Seeeneybwill call him annN world and think nothing if it.

    He’s dangerous and toxic and Sweeney threw Oliver and many other black women under the bus. Many in south jersey

  3. Norcross and Sweeney are together all he way. If you have a problem with George you have a problem with Sweeney. They are both very bad men

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