Democrats outfox Republicans

Gov. Jon Corzine is expected to nominate Democrat Frank Herbert tomorrow — Thursday — to be Morris County’s new superintendent of elections. Herbert, who now lives in Rockaway Township, is a former state senator from Bergen County.

There is much  political intrigue here: The job has been vacant since the death of Rose Anne Travaglia earlier this year. The freeholders decreased the salary for the job to the state minimum and Republican senators Bucco and Pennacchio said they would use “courtesy” to block any Democratic nominee. The job is filled by the governor. The tradition of “courtesy” allows a state senator to block a nominee from his home county for whatever reason. 

But Democrats came up with an ingenuous solution.  The tradition in Trenton is that courtesy is not used to block a former state senator, so Herbert’s nomination can not be blocked.

That means a Democrat will end up getting a key patronage job in Republican Morris County. Dems are delighted at the arrangement and Republicans are unhappy, But as it stands now,there is not a lot they can do about it.


About fsnowflack
Fred Snowflack was editorial page editor and a political columnist for the Daily Record of Morristown for almost 12 years. He has won numerous awards for editorial and column writing from the New Jersey Press Association and has written a blog on county and state politics for the last three years. He lives in Ledgewood in Morris County.

4 Responses to Democrats outfox Republicans

  1. P says:

    Ingenious, they import a Dem from the third or fourth most crooked county in NJ – Camden, Essex, Union/Bergen to try to screw Morris county. I guess Joe Ferriero wasn’t available.

  2. hogwash says:

    The Republicans wanted to not fill the opening to save over two hundred thousand dollars a year, but the Democrats can never give up a chance to spend more money on patronage to their cronies. This guy is nearly a hundred years old abd how long has he lived in Morris County.

  3. Frank Herbert is probably closer to 80, but I see your point …. But let’s not be swayed by the Republicans not wanting to fill the seat; they certainly would fill it with a Republican if they could

  4. Mrs. Corbett says:

    Fred, how hard is it for people to see and understand what you said above–the Republicans are throwing tantrums over Herbert”s appointment and say they would save so much money blah blah blah. The truth: as soon as they get Christie in office, they would put one of their own cronies in that spot on the sly, under the big news. What hypocrites they always are…

    And besides, Republicans control/choke Morris County and have forever, so one little fellow who is not a Rep upsets them so much? Grow up, you selfish bullies who are Morris Republicans

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