Protestors gathered in Trenton Thursday to condemn Gov. Chris Christie’s plan to close the state’s $800 million budget gap over two years with $2.43 billion intended as the legally required contribution for public workers’ pensions.
The New Jersey chapter of the Communications Workers of America (CWA), the state’s largest public sector union, promised to sue the administration to block Christie’s plan.
On the State House steps on Thursday, Hetty Rosenstein, the state director of the CWA, declared “Christie-nomics are a failure.”
Rosenstein elicited cheers from the crowd when she said, “We must immediately change this course. We must do what other successful states are doing – we must pass a millionaires tax.”
State Senate President Steve Sweeney, Rahway mayoral candidate James J. Devine and other Democrats also claimed New Jersey must enact a millionaires tax.
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto said the millionaire’s tax would “give income equality for everybody.”
“The problem we have is the mismanagement over the last five years. We have not done our budgeting correctly,” Prieto said. “We actually have been protecting the mega-rich, while the working class and the poor have been crushed under this administration.”
“The ultra-wealthy one percent has taken all of America’s economic gains since 1908,” said Devine. “It is time to end class warfare in this country with a victory for working families. “It is time to stop greedy rich people from making the rest of America poor.”
“There’s not a spending problem in this state, there’s a revenue problem,” Sweeney said.
“I don’t believe in class warfare, but I don’t believe in the middle class and the working poor being constantly the ones that have to bear the burden her,” Sweeney said. “There’s one group of people paying much less and doing much better, and that’s the wealthy. It is time for everybody to share in the burden in the restructuring and rebuilding of the state.”
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