Assemblyman Wisniewski calls language "indecorous and inflammatory"
BY TOM HESTER SR.
Gov. Chris Christie has used, well, colorful language again and a ranking Democratic Assemblyman has angrily responded.
At his latest town hall meeting in Denville Thursday, Christie criticized the Democratic-controlled Legislature for not moving bills related to his agenda during the lame-duck session in December.
“You can imagine what great precision was used in passing those bills,” Christie told his audience. “It was a pile of crap, I vetoed most of it.”
Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex), who is also state Democratic chairman, was quick to respond.
"Governor Christie is, once again, resorting to indecorous and inflammatory language, this time to justify his veto actions in lieu of any serious discussion with legislators and voters about the bills he rejected,” Wisniewski said. “In my own case, a Teen Driving Safety bill he vetoed reflected proposals developed by a panel of recognized experts created by legislation sponsored by former (Republican) Assemblyman Joseph Malone, and were vetted by the legislature for over a year. If there are specific problems or concerns that he had with the bill, all of us who worked on the proposal would like to know what those concerns were. I'm sure the same is true for colleagues of mine in both houses and both parties.
“To smugly dismiss bills that could have improved the lives of veterans, students, the unemployed, people with health conditions and child victims of sex abuse by simply characterizing them all as 'a pile of crap' is behavior unworthy of a man who holds the office of governor."
Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen) said Christie's language can be taken as an indication he is "out of touch with politics."
“I think the governor’s comments at today’s town hall confirm what I’ve long suspected – that when he gets out the veto pen, he gets a little too excited to look like a Jersey tough guy, and probably doesn’t read half or more of the bills he’s rejecting," Weinberg said. "Not only did he dismiss the bills he vetoed, he included bills he signed – including legislation I sponsored to improve access to oral chemo drugs. What does that say about what he thinks about the people whose lives will be improved by the bills he included in 'the pile'?
"He obviously must be too busy to read," the senator added. "How else can you explain his cavalier dismissal of bills designed to increase job opportunities for out of work New Jerseyans, or restore funding to women’s health care? What other possible explanation could there be to a governor who would reject funding for health care for the working poor, or who would overturn science-based environmental protections, or who seems hell-bent on vetoing equal rights for same-sex couples?"
Actually, Christie approved 25 bills from the lame-duck session, vetoed at least one other measure, and conditionally vetoed 15 others. The governor vetoed the Democrats’ “Back to Work NJ” package, which was designed, in part, to provide job training.