New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney accused Republican legislators of "cowardice" when they failed to support an override of Gov.Chris Christie's veto of the "Sandy Bill of Rights," which had earlier won approval of all 106 members of the Legislature.
In a statement May 30, Sweeney said he asked his Republican colleagues to join him in standing up for the victims of Hurricane Sandy by overriding the governor's veto. "Instead of doing so," he said, "they decided to go back on their own vote and turn their backs on the families who need them most. The politics of a scared and timid GOP has shown its ugly head yet again in New Jersey And the worst part is their cowardice is just punishing folks who've already lost so much."
Making reference to Assemblyman Declan O'Scanlon's op-ed earlier in the week, in which he said he was not supporting the override, Sweeney said, "I read Assemblyman O'Scanlon's op-ed and I haven't seen a better work of fiction since the governor started talking about the 'Jersey Comeback.' What makes it even worse is that the Assemblyman represents some of the hardest hit areas from Sandy. These are his constituents. He should be . . . the first one announcing his support of the override."
In a letter to Sweeney, Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean said Republicans were siding with Gov. Christie's conditional veto, in which the governor said the bill would be "impossible to implement" and would violate a range of federal and state laws (see Gov. Christie's Veto of Sandy Bill of Rights Creates A Furor).
Sweeney said he would continue to work on behalf of the Sandy victims and would post the override for a vote June 12.