Thursday, September 5, 2013

Will Chivukulas Chevy Cola magic work in Congressional District 7 in New Jersey?


Will Chivukulas Chevy Cola magic work in Congressional District 7 in New Jersey?

Thursday 05th, September 2013
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Will Chivukula’s Chevy Cola magic work in Congressional District 7?
Chivukula since he entered politics in 1997 has been teaching his constituents how to pronounce his name by adding Chevy & Cola to show off his simplicity. This magic has worked so far for this veteran carrier politicians for last 15 years getting elected with Indian community’s money from Democrat stronghold and never working for them in time of distress not even for a 5 year old child.

In 1997 he was first elected Councilman from Franklin Twp then deputy Mayor and Mayor from 2000 to 2001 and then Assemblyman from 17th Legislative District. Keeping with the traditions of dishonest Carrier Politicians of New Jersey he also held 2 Elected Offices which is a crime punishable with a Jail term in other States; post of Councilman of Franklin Twp as well as Assemblyman from 2001 to 2005. Currently he is the Deputy Speaker of the Assembly since 2009, member and chair or co-chair of numerous state Committees that can be used for influence paddling and self promotion.

Recently Chivukula is in the news again as default Democrat Party Candidate for Republican stronghold Congressional Dist 7 of New Jersey. Because those who wanted to contest like Ex-Mayor Jun Choi of 5th largest town Edison and Ed Potosnak who ran against incumbent Republican Lance in 2010 both withdrew from the race because the re-districting of Dist 7 was not to their likings. The million dollar question is (that’s exactly Chivukula is asking from the Indian community in Campaign Funding); can the Chevy Cola magic will work to get him a seat in the US House of Representatives from Dist 7?

Since 1914 Dist 7 Congressional Seat has always been in the Republican Column barring 1975 to 1981 when it was held by a Democrat Andrew Maguire from Ridgewood . In Nov. 1980 he was defeated by a fellow resident Marge Roukema a Republican. After that only time a serious challenge has ever been given by a Democrat was in 2006 by very popular Assembly Deputy Speaker Linda Stender a carrier politician since 1988. The 2 term incumbent Republican Mike Ferguson won his 3rd term by less than 3000 votes. In 2008 Stender was defeated by current Republican Congressman Lance by a wide margin of almost 30,000 votes. In 2010 Lance defeated Democrat Ed Potosnak by 33,000 votes by re-establishing the Republican style winning of this district by double digit margins of 10-18%. Voters’ turnout in this District has been around 280,000 since 2001.

In last 2 decades Democrats have damaged their own chances of winning the District 7 forever; by annexing pro Democrats towns during re-districting from Dist. 7 to merge them with Dist 12 a Democrat stronghold to make it more safe for sitting Democrat Rush Holt. In 2001 re-districting areas of the former 7th district such as Somerset in Franklin Township (Somerset County) historically Democratic stronghold were moved into the 12th district to shore up the Democratic incumbent Rush Holt's hold. Again in 2011 re-districting Edison and Woodbridge Democrat stronghold area has been moved out of Dist 7 to make it more pro Republican by adding Republican towns like Millburn and Short Hill from Democrat stronghold Essex County.

Re-districting that should be used to create more compititive Districts is used as a scam run by both parties since 1981 to ensure the winning of the incumbents belonging to both parties for another 10 years. They swap areas to make each others constituency more Democrat or Republican safe. This can also be called “Incumbent Protection Plan” in which Republicans and Democrats both join together to make sure no incumbant lose his/her seat. After re-districting in 2002 Elections 7 Democrat won with an average of 74.5% and 6 Republicans won with 66.2% of the two party votes. These one-sided margins held through till 2010 barring a close contest in Dist 7 in 2006 and Dist 3 in 2010.  This shows if the partisan majority in a district is more than 55% or so there is almost Zero chance of a challanger winning the election or incumbent losing the election.

In 2011 re-districting the Democrats and Republicans agreed to a deal that virtually protected all the incumbents barring one for the sacrificed district to cut down the number of districts to 12 from 13. In other words they settled for 6-6 split for the future Congress rather than creating more competitive districts. It is a known fact that competitive districts would attract better candidates, bring more transparency and incentivize lawmakers to pay more attention to their constituents. Both parties collectively and individually does not believe in that, they believe their incumbents must have the right to chose their voters.That means if you are a Republican living in a Democrat district or vice versa you have to forget that you can get the Democrat incumbent out. If you are a Republican living in a Republican district your vote is irrelevant because it does not matter who wins. It means public opinion has no role to play even if they want to get rid of the incumbents. The only time incumbents can be defeated is during primaries only if they have become eye sore to their own party bosses.

U.S. Voting Rights Act and the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution guarantee the preservation of any Congressional districts in which a single minority group currently makes up a majority of the population. As a result, the African-American majority Dist 10 represented by Rep. Donald Payne (D) for last 23 years and the Hispanic majority Dist 13 represented by Rep. Albio Sires (D) since 2006 must be preserved as majority-minority districts. Re-districting Commission preserved them by picking population from surrounding areas to meet the equal population requirements with other districts. Donald Payne died in office early this year and his son Donald Payne Jr won the special election for his remaining term as well the primary for November election to preserve the legacy and incumbency of his father. He is sure to win in the November general elections and the same is true for Albio Sires (D) to win in his old Dist 13 re-Christian as Dist 8 now.

Minority groups represent almost 40% of New Jersey's population, but Sires and Payne are the only two minority representatives in New Jersey's current 13-member delegation. They will be the only 2 minority members of new Congress in 2012 from NJ.

Districts 2, 3, 4 under Republican representatives and Dist 1 under a Democrat were virtually left alone to make sure no incumbent from either party loses in coming elections. Dist 3 of freshman Jon Runyan (R) was rather made more safe by removing Cherry Hill, a Democratic stronghold from his district and replacing it with the predominantly Republican Brick. The Democrats were planning to seriously challenge Runyan in 2012 but now no more.

The only choice commission had was to merge remaining 7 Districts into 6 in order to reduced the number of Congressional districts from 13 to 12.  So Democrat Dist 6, 8, 9 & 12 and Republican 5, 7 & 11 were redistricted to come up with 6 Districts. The old Dist 13 of Albio Sires (D) was also re-named as Dist 8.
Incumbent Rep Steven Rothman (D) Dist 9 became the victim of re-districting Scam by both parties. In this Scam pitting an incumbent Democrat against an incumbent Republican is seen more unfair than pushing two incumbent Democrats or two Republicans into the same district. Rothman ended up in a rare incumbent vs. incumbent fight with fellow Dist 8 Rep. Bill Pascrell (D) for the redrawn district 9 in June this year. According to media reports the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee offered Rothman a cool $2 million to challenge Republican Scott Garrett for the control of Dist 5 in November Elections. Rothman turned it down. Instead, he decided to challenge Bill Pascrell in his old district, or what's left of it in the primary. Unfortunately for him he lost to Pascrell. The win of Bill Pascrell from Dist 9 in Nov. elections is a forgone conclusion.

Even for the New Jersey ’s 40 legislative districts represented by 40 state Senators and 80 Assemblyman either they are Democrat safe or Republican Safe. Practically all of them are represented by carrier politicians like Chivukula under “Incumbent Protection Plan”. Only two District 12 and 14 saw an average margin of victory for candidates under 10% during the past 4 elections and can be called competitive districts.

Looking at all the above facts related to “Incumbent Protection Plan” run by unionized Republican and Democrat; Upendra Chivukula does not fits in this plan to unseat Republican incumbant Lance in Dist 7. Then Chivukula has never fought a competitive election or from a safe Republican districts other than winning from Democrat strongholds in his 15 years long political carrier. It looks like Chivukula who has never used his vocal cords to raise the issues of political corruption, racism and injustice; has become the victim of political corruption by his own party. For Chivukula the money is there to defeat Lance in the general election but the timing and Republican composition of the district 7 are not in his favor.

More over Chivukula must understand that “Chevy” is not the choice of majority Dist 7 voters and “Cola” of all kinds are associated with obesity and serious life threatening diseases related to obesity. In conclusion Chivukula’s “Chevy Cola” magic and non-use of his vocal chords against any type of corruption in his 15 year long political carrier will fail him big time in Dist 7 to get a seat in the US House of Representatives. The losing margin can be 15-19% or higher. 

May God bless Chivukula’s Photo Hungry Desi (PHD) supporter’s with some wisdom to put their money for better causes then spending it on a pre planned lost election. The only beneficiary is going to be Upendra Chivukula himself!
Dave Makkar

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