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Hoboken Mayor makes ultimatum claims

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.
January 20, 2014 2:04:56 PM PST
What's the high-security mantra? See something, say something?

It's apparently so easy for elected officials to have that slogan roll off their tongues, but when it comes to their own experiences, perhaps not so much.

Take the case of the Mayor of Hoboken, Dawn Zimmer. She claims that New Jersey's Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno put the squeeze on her to approve a development project in exchange for getting federal funds to rebuild damage to Hoboken caused by Superstorm Sandy.

The way politics works or extortion? Arm twisting or wrongdoing?

Mayor Zimmer claims she has personal journals which detail and support her allegations. But why didn't she talk about it when it allegedly happened last year? Was she bullied into silence?

The debate rages, but prosecutors might not care a rat's patooney why Zimmer waited if her claims are true. It's top of mind tonight as we prep the 11 p.m. newscast, in part because Gov. Christie will be inaugurated for a second term tomorrow, and all this political piling on from Democrats in New Jersey who have been seemingly whimpy when it comes to confronting the Governor could be affecting his political future. And, not to mention, much more than that if all these allegations are proved true. We'll have the latest, at 11.

We're also following developments in the Avonte Oquendo disappearance. More body parts including teeth and a skull have been found, and they could be crucial in officially identifying the missing autistic teenager. How did he die, if it's him? Did he indeed run from a dog, get in the East River, and drown? Jim Dolan is on the story for us.

And New York Gov. Cuomo causing a stir among ultra conservatives after his interview with New York Public Broadcasting, in which he opined about the political battle within the national Republican Party a battle between moderates and extremists, as embodied by the Tea Party.

Talking about the extremists, the Governor then railed about "extreme conservatives who are right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay," and then said they have "no place" in New York.

He was talking about extremists, but his words have been hugged by those who, politically, dislike him anyway, claiming Mr. Cuomo wants to kick everyone who disagrees with him out of New York. So if you hear some blather about all of this ? one conservative columnist even called Mr. Cuomo a proponent of "the culture of death" ? now you the rest of the story. Politicians, especially veterans like the Governor, should know that comments can be and are often taken out of context. We suspect that if, given the chance, he'd re-phrase his "no place" line.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg with his AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.

BILL RITTER

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