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What People are Saying about Chris Christie’s Budget Address

February 18, 2010

Chris Christie

It has been 1 week since Chris Christie addressed the joint session of the legislature to detail the state’s much-needed spending cuts.  By all accounts our Governor did not disappoint (anyone except the liberal spend happy democrats).  Here is what others are saying about the much-needed state spending cuts.  Dont miss the comments form Assemblyman DiCicco and SaveJersey’s Matt Rooney


The Courier-Post, “Christie is right to act fast less than four weeks into his term”

Gov. Needed to Make Cuts:

Christie doesn’t have much wiggle room here.  The $2.2 billion deficit is real. It’s the product of the continuing recession. Companies that go bust don’t pay business taxes. Workers who lose their jobs pay as much income tax. Consumers who lack money don’t shop often — so state sales tax revenue is way down.  Those who will criticize Christie for his proposed cuts would say that Trenton should borrow some money or raise taxes of fees to not inflict such painful measures.  But Christie is right — that’s what the state has done for years and it simply cannot afford to do anymore.  Borrowing is not an option.  Likewise, raising taxes should not be an option…Christie is right to act fast less than four weeks into his term. He’s sending a message that he’s not going to put off dealing with the state’s fiscal problems. And it’s smart to get the current budget balanced before the debate over next year’s budget begins.

Wall Street Journal, “Without economic growth, New Jersey will wither. Mr. Christie knows that. He is smart to enact this freeze using his executive authority…”

Escape from Taxation:

Announcing the freeze on $1.6 billion of unspent money, Mr. Christie was blunt: “Today, we come to terms with the fact that we cannot spend money on everything we want. Today, the days of Alice in Wonderland budgeting in Trenton end.”  Not a day too soon, judging from the striking data that a just-released study reveals about the number of residents of the Garden State fleeing to greener pastures…Without economic growth, New Jersey will wither. Mr. Christie knows that. He is smart to enact this freeze using his executive authority while he has the public’s support to act. And before the pols in Trenton push the state back in the direction of Greece., “It’s Christie’s turn now, and so far his actions suggest that his tough-talking campaign vows weren’t just bluster”

Christie’s Budget Cuts Show He Means Business:

Honestly, why should Christie have bothered? This required immediate action to close a more than $2 billion deficit in the current year. And since the Legislature hasn’t responsibly cut spending in a very long time, it wouldn’t have been much help anyway. Let the governor and his people handle this one…Our Democratic leaders have failed the state over two gubernatorial terms. It’s Christie’s turn now, and so far his actions suggest that his tough-talking campaign vows weren’t just bluster. Legislators need to follow, not fight for the lead.

Paul Mulshine, The Star-Ledger, “This is a great idea”

Why N.J. Doesn’t Hold Referendum on Soaring Debt:

So why should Christie contribute to the fund in his first budget? He’s already said he’s not going to do so. Instead Christie is offering the unions a deal that might finally give you an opportunity to vote on pension debt. He’s told the unions that if they accept certain long-overdue reforms and reductions, he will push for a constitutional amendment to be put on the ballot. That amendment would require the state to make its annual contributions to the funds that provide pensions for state, county, municipal and school employees. This is a great idea. In fact if I were Christie I would not merely propose that referendum. I would insist on it.

Asbury Park Press, “This is the job voters elected him to do…Let him do it”

Time to take the medicine:

Christie pledged to take the “principled path,” contrasting himself with former Gov. Jon Corzine, who “pulled the rug out from underneath” the Legislature when it attempted reform.  This is the job voters elected him to do, Christie said.  Let him do it.

Press of Atlantic City, “Seems fair and reasonable to us”

Christie’s budget fix / The pain begins:

Seems fair and reasonable to us…But this was a good speech. One New Jersey residents needed to hear. And, more importantly, one the Legislature needed to hear. Financial disaster looms for New Jersey. There is simply no way to please everyone and hurt no one if the state is ever going to get its balance sheet in order.

Press of Atlantic City, “Seize the momentum provided by a new governor”

Pension reform / Now’s the time:

So just do it.  Seize the momentum provided by a new governor and by unusual bipartisan support for pension reform – and get it done. Now. Before you lose your will.  That’s our advice for state lawmakers.

Carl Golden,, “Christie fulfilled his campaign platform to grab hold of the entrenched Trenton mindset and shake it until fundamental”

Christie Takes a Gamble:

By the sheer audacity of his action, Christie fulfilled his campaign platform to grab hold of the entrenched Trenton mindset and shake it until fundamental and far reaching systemic changes were accepted.


National Federation of Independent Business State Director Laurie Ehlbeck:

“New Jersey’s struggling small business community has been waiting a long time for Trenton to get its fiscal house in order, and today’s announcement is welcome news…Gov. Christie should be commended for coming out quickly with a bold plan to address the state’s red ink. As the governor noted, many of the upcoming budget decisions will be uncomfortable, but they are a necessary evil for a state that has taxed and spent its way into the poor house.”

New Jersey Business & Industry Association President Philip Kirschner:

Called the absence of tax increases “wonderful, and that is the beginning of breaking the cycle that the business community has called for.” He agreed that improving the regulatory environment would do more for businesses than continuing InvestNJ.

New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Senior Vice President Jim Leonard:

Said Christie is taking the bold steps called by the budget situation.  “It was a necessarily sobering message to a state drunk on spending.”

Government Relations Manager for the Chamber of Commerce Southern New Jersey Christina Genovese:

Said Christie and the Legislature are moving toward pension reforms long recommended by her chamber.

New Jersey Association of Counties:

“While state law permits the Governor to undertake emergency measures to balance the budget, county and local governments remain bound by state mandates. The Governor has argued, once again, correctly, that the over-regulation of business is largely responsible for the state’s economic and fiscal problems. County officials would point out that the over-regulation of county and local governments drives up the cost of living in New Jersey and diminishes its competitiveness.”

New Jersey Taxpayers Association President Jerry Cantrell:

“Any reasonable thinking person had to expect the out of control spending would lead to this point eventually, and the besieged taxpayers have been anxiously awaiting it.”


Shannon Bell,, ”Governor Christie is living up to a campaign promise to fix New Jersey’s budget problem”

New Jersey: Spending Freeze, Budget Cuts Chris Christie Shows His Conservatism:

Governor Christie is living up to a campaign promise to fix New Jersey’s budget problem. Most with common sense would agree, the first step in fixing a budget shortfall is to stop spending. No matter what the argument against doing so is… When Chris Christie beat Jon Corzine in January’s election, he ran on a platform  promising “fiscal reform.” I’d say that a complete and total spending freeze New Jersey style is the first step in the right direction to accomplish just that. If only other conservative Governor’s and lawmakers would take such measures.

Mike Proto, Conservatives with Attitude!, “Many of the governor’s proposal are good ones”

Thoughts on Christie’s Budget Speech:

Many of the governor’s proposal are good ones. First, there was a spending freeze on various programs including “InvestNJ” and the “main street” program, to save some $550M. Christie also pointed to “over a billion dollars in reductions and reforms” via reductions to other programs like the NJ Transit subsidy…Next, Christie took on the critical issue of pension reform – a reform that is an absolute must in my view. In fact, one of the highlights of today’s speech was when Governor Christie used the example of two government workers, explained how much they paid into the system and how much they received in benefits… Hard to argue against reforming the system when presented with these two compelling examples. Mr. Christie was very firm about reforming the pension system, urged the legislature to further strengthen their reform bills and promised he would sign such a bill if it reached his desk.

Matt Rooney, The Save Jersey Blog, “Someone with principles who sticks to their guns and challenges the status quo”

An Honest Man in an Unholy Place:

Chris is simply coming through on everything he promised to tackle during the election (in record time, I might add). Someone with principles who sticks to their guns and challenges the status quo is always a rarity under the dome in Trenton.

Daily Muse, In The Lobby, “So it seems, to us anyway, that Christie is being consistent”

Now Comes the Hard Part:

Can we all agree that the state of New Jersey is broke? That we’re facing a $2.2 billion deficit this year, and up to $11 billion next year?  And that now is the time for action, not just rhetoric.  So it’s important to know that even after the freeze, every school district will still have a 2% surplus.  What Christie froze was the surplus over and above that 2%.  So if the state is broke, what is wrong with asking school districts – who were able to build up those surpluses due in part to the state aid they’ve received – to use up that excess surplus money instead?  Some Democratic lawmakers are saying that Christie should have used the state’s $500 million surplus instead.  To which we would note, $500 million is less than 2% of the state’s budget.  So it seems, to us anyway, that Christie is being consistent.


Senate Minority Leader Thomas Kean Jr.:

“It’s been years since New Jersey has had a governor who will talk about our state’s fiscal problems with decisiveness, honesty and courage,” Senator Kean said. “After less than two months in office, the governor has come up with a plan to close a $2.3 billion budget gap without tax increases, furloughs or disruption of our state’s schools.  It’s also worth noting that his plan for balancing the budget, unlike proposals by other governors over the last eight years, contains no unconstitutional borrowing, tax increases or irresponsible accounting gimmicks.  No other governor over the last eight years has proposed such a responsible and fiscally sound plan for closing a deficit.  These proposals are a great start to a fiscal plan that will make New Jersey more affordable for our working and middle class residents,” Senator Kean said. “There should be no doubt now that the people of New Jersey have a leader who is committed to reducing taxes and reining in the ever-increasing cost of government.”

Assembly Minority Leader Alex DeCroce:

“The governor inherited a massive and unprecedented financial problem, but instead of raising taxes as Corzine did when he took office so he could increase state spending, the plan Christie outlined today is a dramatic break with the misguided policies of the past that only perpetuated our problems and made them worse with each passing year.”

U.S. Rep. Leonard Lance (R-Clinton):

“Continued runaway spending is inappropriate given the state of our economy both nationally and here in New Jersey.  I support recessions of appropriations both on the state and federal levels aimed at addressing budget deficits,” said Lance.  “As a state legislator I opposed this type of budgeting and am pleased the Lance Amendment, which prohibits further state borrowing without voter approval, is now in effect…I look forward to working with Governor Christie as he begins the very difficult task of righting the fiscal ship of the state.”

NJ GOP Chairman Jay Webber:

“Today, the Governor laid out what can best be described as a down payment on a future for New Jersey full of economic growth, optimism, and innovation,” said Webber (R-Morris Plains), a two-term Assemblyman. “Governor Christie correctly diagnosed New Jersey’s budget condition as being in a ‘state of fiscal emergency,’ and put forth a plan to address it that is both creative and necessary.  The Governor’s solutions attack waste and inefficiency, identify and utilize savings, and cut spending.  They deserve our full support.”

Assm. Jon Bramnick:

“The governor prescribed tough, but necessary medicine to fix our current budget crisis. Everyone agrees the solutions are painful, but it is time to recognize the old ways of operating the state have failed.”

Assm. Domenick DiCicco:

“The people of New Jersey didn’t elect Gov. Christie to paint a pretty picture of the state’s finances or to play shell games with the budget numbers. They elected him to truthfully sort out our fiscal quagmire and fix a state government that has become unresponsive to the needs of its people.”

Assm. Joseph Malone III:

“There is no magic wand, secret bailout or silver bullet that is going to suddenly make New Jersey’s problems disappear.”

Assm. Alison Littell McHose:

“The Public Advocate’s office drains precious tax dollars at a time when our state faces serious financial peril. There was no reason to bring it back and there is no reason why we should keep it when its duties can be performed by existing resources elsewhere in state government.”

Assm. Declan O’Scanlon Jr.:

“I am encouraged to see him respond to the challenge with strong decisive action. The steps he outlined please no one, but lay the foundation toward correcting years of poor budget decisions, misplaced priorities and a faulty financial structure based on overspending and overtaxing our residents who cannot afford it any more.”

Sen. Steve Oroho:

“We all recognize the fiscal crisis the State is in and Gov. Christie acknowledged that the solutions will involve pain as evidenced by his actions today. But it sets the right tone and is a start towards setting New Jersey on a path towards fiscal sanity and the prosperity that will ultimately follow.”

Assm. David Rible:

“For too long too many have talked about our fiscal crisis, but were not willing to take much needed action. Fortunately, Gov. Christie has made it clear the status quo is no longer acceptable.”

Assm. David Wolfe:

“Gov. Christie is setting a difficult but necessary course toward solvency. No one can cheer the individual outcomes of his plan, but it is an immediate response to a problem that has long been ignored.”

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 18, 2010 4:03 pm

    Mike Proto, Conservatives with Attitude!, “Many of the governor’s proposal are good ones”

    Of course, I also criticized his plans to pilfer surpluses.

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