FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 10, 2007
CONTACT: Bill Pascoe
ASSELTA TO VAN DREW: TELL THE TRUTH
Democratic Assemblymen are "committing highway robbery"
(OCEAN CITY, July 10) – First District Senator Nick Asselta and his Republican Assembly running mates Norris Clark and Michael Donohue – responding to a deliberately misleading campaign flyer supporting Democratic Assemblymen Jeff Van Drew and Nelson Albano – today called on Van Drew and Albano to stop denying the truth about their votes in support of selling New Jersey's toll roads.
"Jeff Van Drew and Nelson Albano are not telling the truth about their support for selling New Jersey's toll roads. They're committing highway robbery, and it's time to call them out on it," said Asselta, referring to a campaign flyer inaccurately stating, "We have never and will not ever support the selling or leasing of our toll roads."
"On June 21," Asselta continued, "Jeff Van Drew and Nelson Albano voted in favor of a provision appropriating unlimited funds to pay for – and I quote – 'legal and engineering fees, financial advisors and other consultants and services associated with, as well as any other costs determined necessary in preparation for, the monetization, sale, or lease of public assets' like the toll roads.
"In layman's terms, Van Drew and Albano gave the Governor a blank check to prepare to sell the toll roads.
"But this campaign flyer that arrived in yesterday's mail box tells quite a different story," Asselta continued. "According to this flyer, Jeff Van Drew and Nelson Albano have NEVER supported a plan to sell or lease New Jersey's toll roads – even though they did EXACTLY that, just a few weeks ago.
"I guess it depends on what the meaning of 'never' is. This kind of double-talk has got to stop. Jeff and Nelson had an opportunity to 'prove up' on their supposed opposition to this one-shot fiscal gimmick, and they failed the test."
"When it comes to selling our toll roads, Van Drew and Albano voted for it before they were against it," said Donohue. "Here it is, only July, and already the Democrats aren't leveling with voters. The residents of the First District have a right to expect their elected leaders to tell them the truth about what they're doing in Trenton. It's just wrong for our representatives to be voting one way in Trenton, and then telling us back home in the district something else.
"And here's something else I find interesting – why is Matthew Milam not on this flyer?" Donohue continued. "The only reason I can see for him NOT to be on this piece is that he must be supporting this plan. After all, this is a campaign flyer, not an official communication from the Van Drew or Albano legislative office. It was paid for by the New Jersey Democratic Assembly Campaign Committee and the Senate Democratic Majority committee, so there's no reason for him and his 'promise' not to be listed here – unless it's because he actually supports the plan."
"Selling, leasing, or 'monetizing' the toll roads would be a disaster," added Clark. "We have opposed this 'Turnpike Tax Hike' from the start. It makes no difference whether the plan is to sell, or lease, or 'monetize' the roads – any way you look at it, it involves privatizing a valuable asset, for a one-time quick fix that can only lead to higher and higher taxes down the road. This isn't just rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic; this is stacking deck chairs higher and higher on the Titanic. Jeff Van Drew and Nelson Albano know that, and they know they can't defend their votes to give the Governor a blank check to prepare for the sale or lease of the toll roads – so they've decided to act as if those votes never took place. That's just not right."
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Paid for by Asselta Clark Donohue