TLDR New Jersey Primary Results: a Loss for the Tea Party, a Win for Ghostface Killah

Categories: New Jersey

Surfsupusa via Wikimedia
Steve Lonegan, pictured at a 2009 Tea Party rally, lost a primary bid to represent New Jersey's District 3 on Tuesday.
U.S. Senate

Former Reagan speechwriter and septuagenarian Jeff Bell will face incumbent Cory Booker in the fall after narrowly beating the closest of his three rivals for the Republican nomination, Rich Pezzullo, by fewer than 5,000 votes.

House of Representatives, District 1

Former Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Gary Cobb handily seized the GOP nomination, but he'll have a tough fight in against Democratic state senator Donald Norcross (winner of the special primary) to represent the heavily Democratic district in the fall.

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New Jersey Mall Shooter Found Dead From a Self-Inflicted Gunshot Wound

Richard Shoop's page
Hours after police cleared the Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey, the shooter who walked into the mall just before closing time was found dead in a remote corner of the building.

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In New, Shutdown-Timed Ad, NJ Governor Chris Christie Just Wants to Remind You He's Good at Compromising

A still from the new ad.
This morning, for no particular reason--not because the federal government has ground to a screeching partial halt, and certainly not because he might like to be president someday--Chris Christie would like to remind you how good he is at compromising. The New Jersey governor released a new 30-second TV ad this morning, "Bipartisan." Against a soaring backdrop of Ferris wheels and beaches, Christie tell us, "I stand up strongly for principles, and I speak bluntly and directly, and I say what I believe. But I also know that my job is to get things done for the people of this state."

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Massive Fire Ravages Seaside Park, New Jersey Boardwalk, Rebuilt After Sandy

Image via NBC New York

A fire has destroyed much of the iconic Seaside Park boardwalk in New Jersey, including large portions of the Funtown Pier amusement park. Around 11 p.m. last night, after nine hours of work by fire crews, the blaze was declared officially contained. Overnight, it destroyed some 40 to 50 businesses, many of them rebuilt after widespread devastation during Hurricane Sandy. Councilwoman Nancy Koury told the Associated Press the fire had caused millions of dollars in damage. In a press conference near the boardwalk, looking shocked and sooty, Governor Chris Christie said, "I feel like I want to throw up."

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New Jersey Caves, Grants American Atheists President His "Offensive" Godless License Plate

Image via American Atheists
Dave Silverman with a retired "ATHEIST" plate.
Perhaps you thought the worst story yesterday about a religious minority being persecuted was the revelation that the NYPD has designated entire mosques as terrorist organizations, spying on imams, recording conversations inside the mosques, and parking fake cabs out front filled with surveillance gear. And if you thought that you were totally -- no, actually, you were right. But while the world was transfixed by the NYPD/Muslim injustice, one man was fighting his own (non)religious battle against the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission.

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Dubious Christian "Counseling" Organizations Sue New Jersey Over Gay Conversion Therapy Ban

Chris Christie points and laughs at gay conversion therapy (probably not).
Two New Jersey therapists, along with the anti-gay Christian counseling groups they belong to, are suing the state over the recently signed ban on "conversion therapy," an absurd, scientifically discredited practice that purports to turn gay people straight. Dr. Tara King and Dr. Ronald Newman are both suing for the right to pretend to change people's sexuality, arguing that the ban constitutes " immediate and irreparable injury to their most cherished constitutional liberties." Both therapists belong to the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality, who have joined the lawsuit, along with the American Association of Christian Counselors. The suit was first reported by Courthouse News.

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New Jersey Becomes Second State to Ban Gay Conversion Therapy

Image via Facebook
New Jersey just became the second state in the Union to ban conversion therapy for minors. Telling teens they can overcome their gayness through therapy and prayer, a practice considered by just about everyone with half a brain to be religiously motivated quackery, was banned by legislation signed by Governor Chris Christie earlier this morning.

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Joe Lhota Has a Murky Past With the East 91st Street Marine Transfer Station

The reopening of the East 91st Street marine transfer station's a controversy a decade in the making. Sparked by Christine Quinn's "environmental racism" comment, the waste disposal spot has infiltrated the mayoral race discussion, leading candidates to pick a side on an issue that involves how we New Yorkers dispose of millions of pounds of trash every day. Republican frontrunner Joe Lhota has pledged to close it if he becomes mayor, but his reasoning is a bit misleading, given his past as Giuliani's go-to garbage defender.

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New Jersey Wants to Raise Its Smoking Age to 21, Too

"This has now truly become a regional, if not national, effort."

Thus spoke City Council Speaker Christine Quinn at a press conference yesterday. Former-governor-turned-state-senator Richard Codey and New Jersey Assemblyman Ruben Ramos came to City Hall to join her in previewing their own version of a bill announced in New York City less than a month ago: a measure to boost the age at which you can buy cigarettes to 21. Quinn is a forerunner of the bill that has placed her directly in front of an issue Bloomberg has championed--a position that could injure her campaign more than help it.

"Less than a month after our initial announcement, our great neighboring state of New Jersey is planning to introduce legislation to do exactly the same thing: raise the age to purchase tobacco to 21," Quinn said. The provision has also been introduced in Albany to apply on a statewide level.

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It Was Only A Matter Of Time Before The Cory Booker Criticism Began

One who tweets much can only expect this to happen.

In an article for PolitickerNJ, Democratic Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver expressed an interest in running against Cory Booker for the Democratic nominee spot in the upcoming 2014 New Jersey Senate race. And, right off the bat, she brought some fighting words with her.

"I want to know what his platform is. What is your position on gun control, what is your position on public education? I don't care that you're in Vogue magazine or Esquire. That's not important to me as a citizen of this state. What's important to me is what will your positions be on Capitol Hill?"

When Cory Booker filed his papers for a senatorial race next year, the main question he faced was whether or not veteran Senator Frank Lautenberg would seek re-election for an office he has occupied for a few decades or so. But, now, it seems as if he has another obstacle to face from potential opponents: himself.

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