ELIZABETH – Gov. Jon Corzine carried Elizabeth, one of New Jersey’s largest Democratic strongholds, 74%-22% four years ago, but indications suggest that he shouldn’t expect that kind of support this time around.
Yesterday, eight of nine city school board members endorsed Republican Christopher Christie for Governor.
“Many of the Board members endorsing Chris today are Democrats, but we all know that when it comes to providing a quality education and a hopeful future for our children, party and politics aren’t a factor,” said school board president Francisco Gonzalez. “Governor Corzine has failed our kids in the last four years when it comes to education policy in our state and it is time for a change in leadership if we’re going to ensure our children receive the quality education they deserve.”
In addition to Gonzalez, board members Carlos Trujillo, Raul Burgos, Armando DaSilva, Rafael Fajardo, Marie Lynn Munn, Fernando Nazco and Elcy Castill-Ospina backed the former federal prosecutor. Former Elizabeth City Councilman Robert Jaspan, former Union County Freeholder Donald Goncalves and former school board member Tony Monteiro also backed Christie. All three are Democrats.
The Christie campaign said that the mostly Democratic school board members are supporting the Republican because they are frustrated with Corzine’s failure to assure funding for critical education programs.
“Corzine heavily favored stop-gap measures to fill the gaping holes in his FY 2010 budget, including funding roughly 10 percent of the education budget with one-time federal stimulus funds. This reckless accounting puts New Jersey children’s education at risk by funding the education budget with $1 billion that will not be there next year,” the Christie campaign said in a statement.
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