The Sopranos Primary

Today is the New Jersey primary and progressives are hoping to score a couple victories.
Rep. Josh Gottheimer in the 5th District is being challenged by Arati Kreibich.

Gottheimer, who was elected in 2016 to represent New Jersey’s 5th District, in the northernmost part of the state, is perhaps best known for consistently voting with Republicans — he voted with President Donald Trump 55 percent of the time last session and 77 percent of the time in 2018 — and being a terrible boss.

In the 8th District, seven-term Rep. Albio Sires is being challenged by Hector Oseguera.

In recent weeks, Sires has scrambled to mount a defense against Oseguera, including re-launching a campaign Twitter account that had been dormant since 2012. The two have traded barbs, each accusing the other of formerly belonging to the Republican Party, among other issues.
...
Like Engel, Sires is a favorite of pro-Israel groups — Democratic Majority for Israel contributed $44,000 in outside expenditures to support his campaign, Pro-Israel America endorsed him and he received $10,000 in donations from the Desert Caucus, a single-issue pro-Israel PAC.

Neither primary has any public polls, so the only thing we can go by is the fact that the incumbents are spending money on attack ads against their progressive challengers.
They wouldn't be doing this if they weren't a real possibility of losing.

The depressing reality is that the odds are against both progressives, and all the other progressive challengers don't stand a chance.

A recent analysis by the Communications Workers of America (CWA) found that no incumbent state legislator who ran on the county line had lost a primary election in New Jersey between 2009 and 2018. Although incumbents generally win re-election, that advantage is rarely so absolute. In New York state, for example, 22 state legislature incumbents lost a primary election during that same time period.

The reason for this is simple - corruption.

New Jersey’s political machines function like those that ran many U.S. cities at the turn of the 20th century—think Tammany Hall in New York City. They’re run by “bosses” who use their control of jobs and other resources to maintain political power...
New Jersey’s reputation for crime and corruption—one book on the subject is called The Soprano State—may suggest that machine politics is simply endemic.

Fortunately, all is not lost. The progressive insurgency is only a couple years old. The political establishent cannot be overthrown overnight.

Wresting control from New Jersey’s political machines is a daunting challenge, but progressive activists in the state have formed a coalition called Take Back NJ to do just that. The coalition includes New Jersey Working Families, an affiliate of the Working Families Party, as well as several dozen grassroots groups such as NJ 11th for Change, NJ7 Forward, and South Jersey Women for Progressive Change, which helped flip four congressional seats in 2018. The members of these groups often became involved in electoral politics for the first time, learned about the state’s sclerotic political system, and decided to focus some of their energy on fixing it.
Share
up
15 users have voted.

Comments

Pelosi

A firm partially owned by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband was among the lawmaker-linked businesses that got Paycheck Protection Program loans, according to data released Monday.

Companies owned by or associated with Reps. Mike Kelly (R-Pa.), Kevin Hern (R-Okla.), Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) and Rick Allen (R-Ga.) also received the coronavirus loans. Businesses linked to Reps. Roger Williams (R-Texas), Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.), Susie Lee (D-Nev.) and Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D-Fla.) previously reported they got loans.

Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill said her husband, Paul Pelosi, is “a minor, passive investor in this company. He was not involved in or even aware of this PPP loan.”

Hammill told The Post that Paul Pelosi owns 8.1 percent of EDI Associates, which got a loan of between $350,000 and $1 million. The company invests in the El Dorado Hotel in Sonoma, Calif. Pelosi’s stake is worth between a quarter-million and half-million dollars, according to official disclosure forms.

up
13 users have voted.

@gjohnsit

Ed. Spelling correction

up
4 users have voted.

We are so screwed.

lotlizard's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness  
where you need not be in the least aware of what’s being done to keep the juicy returns flowing.

up
3 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@gjohnsit

As did Elaine Chao, McConnell's wife. The Ayn Rand organization. And quite ca few other congress critters who are multi millionaires. Meanwhile McConnell’s friends think people getting unemployment benefits are lazy gits so they want to end the federal benefits.

This asset stripping will continue until moral improves. Or the millions of people who are going to be kicked out of their homes rise up again. Too bad we don’t have an FDR waiting in the wings this time. Just ByeDone saying that he’s going to be one.

up
10 users have voted.

"It is remarkable that a sitting president would express less than complete confidence in the American democracy’s electoral process."

Hillary: "I'd be president today if Comey, Bernie, Bros and Putin hadn't stolen it from me."

@snoopydawg

I might consider believing him if he first confessed and apologized for all the right wing evil he did as a Senator.

up
5 users have voted.

We are so screwed.

Cassiodorus's picture

up
4 users have voted.

"Scab of a nation, driven insane" -- Frank Zappa

lotlizard's picture

there’s a similar channel for Dem party political consultants called “Voter-Trap Tuesdays” …

https://www.youtube.com/user/historichunter

“Voters are attracted by the ‘Bernie butter’ and when they venture out far enough, suddenly the DNC cylinder spins and they drop into the Biden bucket … Now let’s set this one out overnight as a test and see how many progressives we catch.”

up
5 users have voted.
RantingRooster's picture

I recommend this website GoodJobsFirst.Org, for gathering information about Corporations, their Subsidies, Tax breaks, Violations, now including COVID Stimulus info.

Good Jobs First, a 22-year old non-profit based in Washington DC focusing on government and corporate accountability, now seeks a communications director.

Good Jobs First is a small, efficient resource center with a nimble teamwork culture. We provide constant assistance to grassroots groups, journalists and public officials on the issues of economic development subsidies and corporate ethics and accountability. Communications are integral to Good Jobs First’s everyday work: our websites and especially our four databases provide more than two million pageviews per month; we are frequently cited by the news media; and GJF is a firmly established “go to” resource for groups and activists in the U.S. and increasingly a model for groups overseas.

Good Jobs First’s newest resource is Covid Stimulus Watch, watchdogging the CARES Act and related stimulus laws.

For example, Nancy's husband's investment in EDI Associates.
edi associates.png

I'm on a shoot this week with a guy from New Jersey. He looks like a Soprano. Short, heavy set, no neck, Italian. I mean he looks, kind of sounds like, he could be one of those characters from the TV series. That's exactly what I thought yesterday when I first met him. I was like New Jersey, get a rope... (Old TV commercial about Pace picante sauce vs a sauce from New Jersey)

The shoot I was on yesterday, stated at 2:30pm and ended at 11pm. I was on top of the press box at one of the Jesuit highschool stadiums, shooting a Lacrosse tournament. I felt like I was in a frigging microwave. 3 more days... It's supposed to be 105 on Monday. Fuck....

If you don't here from me in a few days, I was either snuffed out by the guy from New Jersey running this shoot, or I just melted...(snark)

Drinks

up
5 users have voted.

"Men who look upon themselves born to reign, and others to obey, soon grow insolent; selected from the rest of mankind their minds are early poisoned by importance;" - Thomas Paine, Common Sense

@RantingRooster Pelosi, Nunes COVID-19 loans

IMHO, PPP wasn't the worst possible idea out of DC, but it required a lot more limitations and restrictions. IOW -- it was implemented in the same half-assed way the lockdowns were.

up
4 users have voted.
travelerxxx's picture

@RantingRooster

Thanks for the link to https://covidstimuluswatch.org, RR. That's a good one. I've already used it to lookup a number of outfits that are shown to have received funds.

Do be careful about heat stroke when you're up high. It's happened to me and I was lucky I didn't fall. Perhaps lash yourself to something sturdy?

up
3 users have voted.
RantingRooster's picture

@travelerxxx Today we stated at 8am and ended at noon. But the sun was in our eyes and the frigging 2" monitor on the video camera, I couldn't even see it. Probably one of the lest "professional shoots" I've been on in a long time.

20200708_082724.jpg

The Gosh dern lacrosse balls are tiny!

up
2 users have voted.

"Men who look upon themselves born to reign, and others to obey, soon grow insolent; selected from the rest of mankind their minds are early poisoned by importance;" - Thomas Paine, Common Sense

RantingRooster's picture

@travelerxxx find subsidies, tax breaks, violations. I was talking with a friend of mine, who's like a techo genius (reall good at engineering / programming), and we're looking at combining opensecrets.org, votesmart.org, and the goodjobsfirst.org data, via an API (application programming interface) to be able to put in a politician's name, and get a super detail (drill down) report who financed their campaigns, then of those, what lobbyists, what companies they work for, what legislation they lobbied, all the violations of those company's that contributed, their tax break etc...

Kind of like an instant dossier on any politician in the US.

We're only in the "idea" stage at this point. It's a, I would really love to do this, but, we don't have money to spend the necessary time to do it, and do it "right".

I personally love it. I use screen shots, with a link, of the data on twitter a lot, like this one. (of course with a snarky comment to go with it...)

But, But, But, "Socialism"!
JP_Subsides_1.png

Or point out Jamie Dimon, and wonder why a company w/ 3 felony convictions gets, 1.3 trillion in subsides, and then gets a fucking raise instead of jail! Crazy

I'm glad you like it! Drinks

up
4 users have voted.

"Men who look upon themselves born to reign, and others to obey, soon grow insolent; selected from the rest of mankind their minds are early poisoned by importance;" - Thomas Paine, Common Sense

travelerxxx's picture

@RantingRooster

Kind of like an instant dossier on any politician in the US.

Man, you're going to need some real computer horsepower to keep up with those crooks. Also, if you actually manage to do it, best have a good insurance policy and stay out of airplanes.

Hell of an idea, though. I like it.

up
4 users have voted.
RantingRooster's picture

@travelerxxx haven't flown since 9/11. I refuse to have some stranger pat down my private parts. Mosking

up
5 users have voted.

"Men who look upon themselves born to reign, and others to obey, soon grow insolent; selected from the rest of mankind their minds are early poisoned by importance;" - Thomas Paine, Common Sense

travelerxxx's picture

@RantingRooster

I've only flown commercially once since then. I didn't much care for it.

I have flown many, many miles since 9/11, but that was due to my former job as an aircraft mechanic. Most of that was in broken helicopters, trying to figure out what was broken and how to fix it. It doesn't really count since no one was patting down my butt.

up
1 user has voted.