NJEA catches Christie lie in town hall
New Jersey's largest teacher's union put out a statement Friday saying Governor Christie was continuing a "long history of lying about pensions." Before you dismiss this as governor bashing, here's the backstory.
Hasbrouck Heights, Thursday night, Christie is holding court in yet another town hall meeting. He gets into a heated exchange with the husband of a teacher over pensions. Christie blames past governors for shortchanging the system including Republican Christie Whitman and Democrats Jim Florio, James McGreevey, Richard Codey, and Jon Corzine.
Then he asked why unions never sued those governors as they are suing him.
"Where were they when Jim McGreevey was not paying into the pension and Dick Codey was not paying into the pension?" he said.
"They were in court," answered the teacher's husband.
"No they weren't," the governor snapped. "They didn't even sue them back then. No, because they were Democrats. They didn't even sue them because they supported them for office."
In no time, tough-as-nails NJEA president Wendell Steinhauer pointed out that the union DID in fact sue McGreevey's administration in 2003 for deferring a $434 million payment. "NJEA did sue the state over its pension funding failures in 2003, while McGreevey was governor. That case dragged on for several years, through the Codey and Corzine administrations, and was only finally settled in 2010, during Christie's first months in office."
As far as Christie's claim that they supported Democrats, again, sound the angry game show buzzer. The union strongly opposed Florio, not backing him for 1993 re-election and holding angry rallies against Democratic lawmakers in 1991 over school funding reforms.
It's good to have people keep politicians honest. I just hope folks are listening.