Chris Christie Lashes Out At Newspapers, Defends Failed Legislation

Gov. Chris Christie spent the better part of his monthly radio show Thursday night attacking newspapers for lobbying against a measure that would cut into their revenues while also defending a failed plan to give upward of $10 million in raises to government workers and allow him to profit off a book.

Flashing anger and raising his voice, Christie lashed out at editorial writers and their corporate employers with the familiar language he typically reserves for public employee unions, calling newspapers “just another special interest feeding like pigs at the government trough.”

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2 thoughts on “Chris Christie Lashes Out At Newspapers, Defends Failed Legislation

  • December 23, 2016 at 9:12 am
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    If public notices are removed from newspapers, the real losers are not the newspapers, but the public. People know to their local newspaper for notices. Allowing government websites to satisfy the legal requirement means that people would have to look a multiple sites in many cases. Proponents of removing the newspaper publication requirement have never offered a solution to the problem of archiving and authentication of publication. Websites can be hacked. Archives sometimes go missing with migration to new hosts, or become unavailable because of the electronic format they’re stored in.

    Localities think this will be ‘free money.” But, it will cost them to have notices uploaded, databases maintained and stored, and they will have the liability on them in a lawsuit that hinges on whether proper notice was given.

    Print provides archives that will be retrievable for decades, and authentication that notices were properly run on the required schedule is simple. With most state press associations, including New Jersey’s, putting public notices from newspapers on a statewide website, the issue of readers migration to digital media is also a moot point.

    Finally, from a good governance perspective, it’s better for an independent third party to be responsible for providing mandated notice to the public. And that independent watchdog has always been a function of the press.

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  • December 25, 2016 at 12:59 pm
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    Christie shows his true lack of understanding and bias towards bigger government. Legal advertising in newspapers is expensive because of the laws passed over the years by lawyers lining their own pockets. Putting them on line may save some money in the short run but it will ultimately mean an even less informed public as individual citizens will need to seek out the web sites that contain all of the legal information that may impact them. In the meantime, newspapers trying to hold the government accountable will have fewer resources available to support the publishing of those government actions and legal proceedings. The large corporate newspapers are the target of Christies anger but the reality is it the small, often weekly, local newspapers that will be harmed most by Christies legislation. Local communities need to be publishing more information – not less. They need to revise the archaic and outdated legal publishing rules to make them available to the broadest audience possible. This might mean publishing in multiple publications and requiring all papers adjudicated for publishing legal notices to post those notices on their own web sites as part of their continuing qualification as a newspaper of record. The Internet does not reach everybody and has no outlet for citizens who may not have a computer or smart phone. Christies solution is shortsighted and reactionary.

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