Category Archives: Lt. Governor

NJPP Monday Minute: 11/2/09 Secession Shenanigans End November 3

Election Day tomorrow brings something new to the state – the election of New Jersey’s first lieutenant governor.

In most states (42 to be exact), the lieutenant governor takes over when the governor resigns, leaves the state or is incapacitated. In three states, the secretary of state or the attorney general takes over; in five states it is the state Senate president.

Until the state’s recent law change, New Jersey was one of those states where the Senate president became the acting governor when the governor could no longer serve. In New Jersey this has led to some bizarre circumstances–one where the state had six governors in just under a year and five governors who served during one week in 2002.

For those who don’t remember, that one week period was a curious one. Five people were governor of New Jersey between January 8 and January 15 in 2002.

Here’s the story:

  • Senate President Donald T. DiFrancesco was governor until January 8, 2002. When Christine Todd Whitman resigned as governor on January 31, 2001 to become head of the federal Environmental Protection Agency under President Bush, Mr. DiFrancesco served as both Senate president and governor from that date until January 8, 2002.
  • James E. McGreevey had been elected governor and was to take office on January 15, 2002.
  • On January 8, 2002, Donald T. DiFrancesco was replaced as Senate president by two senators–Senator John O. Bennett (a Republican) and Senator Richard J. Codey (a Democrat). The office was shared because the Senate was evenly divided, 20-20 between Republicans and Democrats.
  • For the one hour period separating the end of Mr. DiFrancesco’s Senate term and the appointment of the two new Senate presidents, the state’s Emergency Succession Act required Attorney General John J. Farmer, Jr. to serve as governor.
  • Once the two senators were appointed co-presidents of the Senate, a determination had to be made about who would serve as governor before the newly elected governor was officially sworn in. As co-Senate presidents, it was decided that Senator Bennett would be governor from January 8 until January 12 and Senator Cody from January 12 until January 15, when the newly elected Governor James McGreevey took office.
  • What New Jersey had was a bad system, as NJPP noted back in a 2004 commentary. The Senate president was elected to the Legislature to represent one of 40 legislative districts–not a state of more than 8 million. His colleagues in the Senate elected him president in a vote that required at most 21 votes. No one elected him to run the state. Further, as governor and Senate president, the person holding that office was the head of the executive branch and head of the Senate–clearly a violation of the separation of powers and a situation ripe with potential conflicts of interest.

And this is how and why New Jersey came into compliance with the majority practice in the nation. And why Tuesday November 3 will mark a new era in New Jersey history.

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Filed under election day, Lt. Governor, New Jersey Policy Perspective

Best Quote of the Day, From Yesterday

“The facts surrounding the freeze versus layoff issue belie Sheriff Guadagno’s claim that she is the rare elected official who hasn’t backed down from the public-employee unions,”… Guadagno “essentially sabotaged the county’s plan as it related to the unions within the Sheriff’s Office,”.

Monmouth County Freeholder Jonh D’Amico quoted in the Asbury Park Press about Monmouth County Sheriff / Republican Lt. Governor candidate, Kim Guadagno and her efforts to undermine negotiations with county union members.

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Filed under Freeholder John D'Amico, Kim Guadagono, Lt. Governor, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Sheriff, Republican Candidate

Rocky start for Guadagno on GOP gubernatorial ticket

BOB JORDAN – Asbury Park Press

Monmouth Beach resident Kim Guadagno made history last week by becoming the first person in New Jersey politics chosen as a lieutenant governor candidate. Guadagno was already in the record books as Monmouth County’s first female sheriff.

But Guadagno got off to a bumpy start on the first day of the campaign last Monday and continues to be challenged on her claim to have successfully handled tough negotiations with public-employee unions. Monmouth Democrats contend Guadagno instead obstructed efforts to freeze county government salaries by pandering to unions within the Sheriff’s Office.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie said at a Freehold Township campaign stop that the flap has no reflection on his newly minted running mate.

Read More >>>Here

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Filed under Asbury Park Press, Bob Jordan, Chris Christie, Kim Guadagono, Lt. Governor, Monmouth County Sheriff

Corzine Announces Weinberg Via Email And Receives Immediate Response From Facebook

A short while ago I received the following email from the Corzine09 campaign announcing Loretta Weinberg as Governor Corzines choice to be his running mate as Lt. Governor:


This November, for the first time in our state’s history, New Jerseyans will have the opportunity to vote both for Governor and for the newly-created office of Lieutenant Governor.

I am proud to announce that I have selected State Senator Loretta Weinberg as my nominee to serve as New Jersey’s first Lieutenant Governor.

I hope you’ll join both of us tomorrow, Saturday July 25th, at 2 p.m. at the Bergen Performing Arts Center at 30 North Van Brunt Street in Englewood.

Those of you in Bergen County probably already know Senator Weinberg well. She has served the Bergen County community with honesty, honor, and distinction since she was first elected to the State Assembly in 1992 and, then, as a State Senator since 2005.

For those of you who may not know Senator Weinberg, I know that you will be impressed by her legislative experience, the significant and positive change she’s brought to our state, and by her personal values and unquestionable integrity.

Often called the “conscience of the Legislature” because of her principled stands on issues large and small, Loretta Weinberg isn’t afraid to take on the tough fights:

Loretta has been leading the charge on ethics reform for years. She’s passed legislation to require greater financial disclosure by local government officials, toughen regulations for lobbyists, strengthen anti-nepotism rules on campaign contributions and limit public contracts to businesses that make political contributions.

She has put the safety of our children and New Jersey residents first. Loretta battled the powerful gun lobby to protect our children by mandating safety locks on all handguns and fought to lower the blood alcohol level state-wide for which a person can be considered to be guilty of drunk driving.

She is a tireless advocate for protecting New Jerseyan’s health. Against stiff opposition, Loretta took on Big Tobacco and sponsored the law making indoor public places smoke-free. She stood up to insurance companies and succeeded in forcing hospitals to provide longer stays for new moms and their babies. And she has made combating autism a primary focus as the sponsor of several laws funding treatment, education and research for autistic children.

The list goes on and on. For over forty years, Loretta Weinberg has been an advocate for better health care, honest government, environmental protection, women’s rights, and protecting the pocketbooks of New Jersey’s working families.

She shares my commitment to our state and my vision for what New Jersey can be, and I cannot think of a better person to serve as New Jersey’s first Lieutenant Governor. I’m confident that as you get to know her you will become as big a fan of Loretta Weinberg as I am.

I’m confident that Loretta’s steadfast commitment, her deep legislative experience, and her personal integrity will prove to be invaluable as we continue to build on the remarkable successes of my first term. I know that Loretta will be a partner that I can trust and will become a unique and important voice in the next Corzine Administration.

I’m confident that she will set the highest standard for what New Jersey’s Lieutenant Governor can and should be, and I’m looking forward to working side-by-side with her over the next four years.

I know that together we will continue to do great things for the state of New Jersey.

Governor Jon Corzine

Was this a good choice? We’ll find out soon, people are already starting to weigh in. Here are some comments left on the Governor’s face book page:
“This is what we really need, a woman to clean things up!!!! But not like Christine Whitmann, who stole $100 million from state employee pension funds to make pretend that she could balance a budget. We are and will pay for that for a long time.”
“Love her!”

“I KNEW SHE was THE ONE, THE RIGHT choice for Lt. Governor!! YES! She’s a fighter! She is full of life and more!! Loretta Weinberg: “The people’s lt. governor! Great Choice, Gov. Corzine!!”

“Ms Weinberg is smart and experienced and good for NJ.”

Smart and one tuff broad. Great Choice!”

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Filed under Central New Jersey, Facebook, Gov. Jon Corzine, Lorretta Weinberg, Lt. Governor

Middletown’s Scharfenberger to seek 13th District Assembly Seat

This is big news that means there is a huge shake up going on in Monmouth County. I just heard from a very reliable source that Middletown’s Deputy Mayor, Gerry Scharfenberger, will be running for Amy Handlin’s Assembly seat in the 13th District.
How is this possible? It seems that there is a major plan brewing to regain Middletown for the GOP. NJ State Senator and Middletown resident Joe Kyrillos will be seeking the Lt. Governorship on the line with his long time buddy Chris Christie. The plan then has fellow Middletown resident ,Assemblywoman Amy Handlin, seeking Kyrillos’s seat in the State Senate for the 13th district. Scharfenberger will then fill Handlin’s seat in the Assembly.
This is all geared toward getting out strong GOP support in Middletown to elect Steve Massel to the township committee, which would then give the Middletown GOP their super majority once again and silence democratic opposition to their doings in Middletown.
I’ll have more on this later.

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Filed under 13th Assembly District, Amy Handlin, Chris Christie, Gerry Scharfenberger, Joe Kyrillos, Lt. Governor, Middletown, Middletown Republicans, Monmouth County GOP, Steve Massel