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Karcher Statement On Pay-To-Play

TRENTON – Senator Ellen Karcher, a leading champion of State government reform, issued the following statement regarding the Senate’s failure to approve S-2052, a bill which would restrict pay-to-play, or the practice of campaign donors cashing in on their donations to receive lucrative State contracts, in New Jersey:

“I am disappointed that we could not take this first step towards more ethical government in New Jersey. The time for action is long overdue, and I look forward to continuing to work hard towards that end.

The bill was held up today because legislators, on both sides of the aisle, had concerns about some of the particulars. While I know that we should do this right, the first time, I am also a firm believer that anything that restricts pay-to-play will ultimately be judged favorably in the court of public opinions. The people of New Jersey want reform, and while we are looking into the minute details of this bill, abuses continue.

“I also want to make it clear that I will not quietly accept any amendments which might offer a partisan edge to one political affiliation over another. Pay-to-play reform must not be used as a sword by which one party can attack another, but rather as a shield to protect all of New Jersey’s residents from the effects of corrupt government.

“I will work with my colleagues in the Legislature to address all concerns, so that we can move forward with a comprehensive ban that will benefit the taxpayers of our State above all else. Pay-to-play is an insidious practice that must come to an end in New Jersey so that government can again be for the people, rather than for those who can afford to contribute.”