Political Strategists Analyze NJ Gubernatorial Candidates
New Jersey Republican Strategist, Jeannette Hoffman, and Chief of Staff in Essex County & Democratic Strategist, Phil Alagia talk about the pros and cons of each the announced New Jersey gubernatorial candidates and the impact of Trump’s presidency on the outcome of New Jersey’s election.
"We are pleased to welcome Jeanette Hoffman, who is a Republican strategist in the great state of New Jersey, and Phil Alagia, Chief of Staff, Essex County government, and also a Democratic strategist. Welcome to State of Affairs. You like our new set? Beautiful. I love it. Beautiful. Congratulations on a new show. Well, thanks to our partners here at NJTV in Newark. Let me ask you, we've been talking to all these candidates running for governor in New Jersey of 2017, take over in 2018. Let me ask you, if you were to say the three issues that this race for governor, post Chris Christie, will turn on, what would you say they are? Absolutely affordability and the economy, property taxes, and schools. To me, those are the big three. I think New Jersey has been having a tough time grappling with those issues. You know, year after year, we have property taxes that keep skyrocketing. We have a gas tax that's making our state more expensive. I think the people of New Jersey want to hear how these candidates are gonna address these issues. But take a step back, Phil. How does a candidate talk about property taxes, right? As opposed to saying... say a candidate says, "I'm going to lower your property taxes." Wait, how does that...? Doesn't everyone say that? Yeah. They're gonna lower... everyone says they're gonna lower 'em. How? And they go up every year. Devil's advocate. Is it not the mayor's job, the city council's job, to make decisions about what the property tax levy should be in a community? What does the governor have to do with that? You know, there's the tax rebates that the state sends out. Is it a gimmicky thing to try to give some property tax relief to people? But you're right. Your property taxes are made up... a small portion by county government, a small portion by municipal government. What's the biggest piece? Board of Education. Yeah. Yup. Schools? You run your school system. 60 to 70 percent of your budget. So say someone says, they're running for governor, "I am going to massively increase... I'm running for governor, and I'm gonna spend more money..." You imagine this candidate runs for governor? Mm hmm. Phil, both of you advise candidates who run for major office, right? You know every level of government. A candidate says, "I'm gonna run for office, and I'm gonna say, 'I'm gonna spend more state money of your dollars, tax dollars, on public education than ever before'". Winning campaign, Phil? I don't think anyone wants to hear about more expenses. People want to hear, "do more with less" and let's..."