Sunday, December 26, 2010

Go Ahead, Senator Sweeney, Make My Day

Talk about "below the fold".

On Christmas Day, 1:00pm, when most people were not reading the Star Ledger or, came the news that Governor Chris Christie and Lt Governor Kim Guadagno are both taking vacation out of state, leaving Senate President Stephen Sweeney as acting governor while both are away. Maybe I missed something, but wasn't the position of Lt. Governor created to provide for continuity in the NJ Executive branch while the Governor was unavailable to discharge his duties? How do they get away with leaving the state at the same time?

While we know that the Governor will be in Disney World in Florida with his family, it has not been released (not to this writer, at least) where Lt Gov. Guadagno will be, other than that she will be out of state. Perhaps she will be in Disney World with the governor, standing behind him, gazing longingly, Nancy-Reagan-like, while Christie hob-nobs with Mickey and watches his kids enjoy the rides.

According to the Star Ledger:
"Theoretically, Sweeney could sign legislation Christie hasn’t acted on or even file nominations Christie would never dream of filing. Sweeney could even re-nominate former state Supreme Court Justice John Wallace Jr. to the bench, whose pass-over by Christie in favor of attorney Anne Patterson angered Sweeney. But he won’t."

Says Sweeney:
“I wouldn’t do that to him. The guy is going on vacation with his family, and I’m not going to ruin it by creating mischief. The governor’s office is something that people shouldn’t think is a toy. It’s a serious responsibility.”

It speaks volumes that the governor has left the State government in hands of Sweeney, with full confidence that there will be no "mischief", where "mischief" may be defined as reinstating Justice John Wallace, or signing the "Back To Work NJ" and the anti-bullying bills.

While we're on the subject of missed opportunities, since this is a time when teachers, and many others, have the week off, this would have been the ideal time for the governor to defer his vacation and hold some "Town Hall" meetings at a time when his audience would include members of his constituency who typically cannot attend such meetings on normal weekdays. After all, if his "Reform" is so urgent, why leave the state now? Certainly a Disney vacation can wait until the next school break in the spring.

So, how about it, Senator Sweeney? You're right, the governor's office is a serious responsibility. So how about some mischief? .

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