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US Senate overwhelmingly passed criminal justice reform bill backed and promoted by President Trump

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file photo by Boyd Loving

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

Washington DC, The US Senate overwhelmingly passed a criminal justice reform bill backed and promoted by President Trump on Tuesday night.The First Step Act passed on a vote of 87 to 12, with dozens of Republicans joining all the Democratic senators in approving the bill.

Congressmen Tom Reed (NY-23) and Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05), Co-Chairs of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, released to the following statement:
“The Problem Solvers Caucus was proud to put our full weight behind the FIRST Step Act more than six months ago. This bill betters our communities, improves the lives of thousands and saves taxpayers money. Congress must continue to craft and pass more bipartisan legislation like the FIRST Step Act.”

Trump congratulated the Senate in a tweet soon after it passed , “America is the greatest Country in the world and my job is to fight for ALL citizens, even those who have made mistakes. Congratulations to the Senate on the bi-partisan passing of a historic Criminal Justice Reform Bill,” he tweeted. He went on , “This will keep our communities safer, and provide hope and a second chance, to those who earn it. In addition to everything else, billions of dollars will be saved. I look forward to signing this into law!”

The bill will make sweeping changes to the criminal justice system if signed into law, including making it easier for some prisoners to earn early release to halfway houses and protecting first-time offenders from mandatory minimum sentences.

Jared Kushner said in a USA Today editorial  in November , “The administration also worked with Congress to draft the FIRST STEP Act, legislation which seeks to strengthen recidivism reduction and evidence-based reentry programs for inmates in federal prisons. We continue to work with the law enforcement and faith and business communities to find ways to get people leaving prison properly reintegrated into society.”

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Trump Names Son in Law , owner of Observer Media and New Jersey Native Jared Kushner Senior Advisor to the President

Jared Kushner
January 10,2017
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, President-elect Donald J. Trump today announced Jared Kushner will serve as Senior Advisor to the President. Kushner will work closely with Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and Chief Strategist Stephen K. Bannon to execute President-elect Trump’s agenda. Together, Bannon, Priebus and Kushner have formed an effective leadership team.

Kushner, a widely respected businessman and real estate developer was instrumental in formulating and executing the strategy behind President-elect Trump’s historic victory in November.  Kushner has chosen to forego his salary while serving in the administration.

“Jared has been a tremendous asset and trusted advisor throughout the campaign and transition and I am proud to have him in a key leadership role in my administration,” said President-elect Trump. “He has been incredibly successful, in both business and now politics. He will be an invaluable member of my team as I set and execute an ambitious agenda, putting the American people first.”

Chief of Staff Reince Priebus added, “Jared is a visionary with a rare ability to communicate with and assemble broad coalitions of support. His entrepreneurial mindset will be a great asset to the team as well as his open mind, adaptability and keen intellect.”

“It is an honor to serve our country,” said Kushner. “I am energized by the shared passion of the President-elect and the American people and I am humbled by the opportunity to join this very talented team.”

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Exclusive Interview: How Jared Kushner Won Trump The White House

Jared Kushner

Steven Bertoni ,


It’s been one week since Donald Trump pulled off the biggest upset in modern political history, and his headquarters at Trump Tower in New York City is a 58-story, onyx-glassed lightning rod. Barricades, TV trucks and protesters frame a fortified Fifth Avenue. Armies of journalists and selfie-seeking tourists stalk Trump Tower’s pink marble lobby, hoping to snap the next political power player who steps into view. Twenty-six floors up, in the same building where washed-up celebrities once battled for Trump’s blessing on The Apprentice, the president-elect is choosing his Cabinet, and this contest contains all the twists and turns of his old reality show.

Winners will emerge shortly. But today’s focus is on the biggest loser: New Jersey governor Chris Christie, who has just been fired from his role leading the transition, along with most of the people associated with him. The episode is being characterized as a “knife fight” that ends in a “Stalinesque purge.”

The most compelling figure in this intrigue, however, wasn’t in Trump Tower. Jared Kushner was three blocks south, high up in his own skyscraper, at 666 Fifth Avenue, where he oversees his family’s Kushner Companies real estate empire. Trump’s son-in-law, dressed in an impeccably tailored gray suit, sitting on a brown leather couch in his impeccably neat office, displays the impeccably polite manners that won the 35-year-old a dizzying number of influential friends even before he had gained the ear, and trust, of the new leader of the free world.

“Six months ago Governor Christie and I decided this election was much bigger than any differences we may have had in the past, and we worked very well together,” he says with a shrug. “The media has speculated on a lot of different things, and since I don’t talk to the press, they go as they go, but I was not behind pushing out him or his people.”

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the Ridgewood blog: New Jersey’s winners & losers in a Trump Presidency

The Celebrity Apprentice

November 10,2016
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, Republican Donald Trump’s stunning victory over Democratic rival Hillary Clinton to become the nation’s 45th president will have immediate repercussions on New Jersey’s key players.

Here are the 2016 presidential election’s Garden State winners and losers :


Bergen County Democrats

Bergen County Democrats made a clean sweep in Countywide elections.

Chris Christie

All we can say is you can’t fall off the floor .

GOP State Sen. Michael Doherty

The Conservative New Jersey state senator was an early Trump supporter. Doherty (R-Warren) was the only state legislator to board the Trump Train right from the get go as other Republicans waited for Trump to gain momentum.

U.S. Rep. Tom MacArthur

MacArthur (R-3rd Dist.) was the only GOP House member from New Jersey to attend the Republican National Convention that nominated Trump unlike the rest of the NJ GOP Cowards.

Jared Kushner

Trump’s son-in-law acted as a top adviser to the Republican nominee. Liberal Kushner is the publisher of the New York Observer, which owns the New Jersey political news website PolitickerNJ.

Kellyanne Conway

New Jersey native ,Trump’s campaign manager, she cheerfully guided and disciplined the Trump campaign to take the White House. If she were a “liberal ” we would be all hailing her as breaking the glass ceiling ,being the first women to run a successful national campaign.

the late Antonin Scalia

The late Supreme Court justice from Trenton is the role model Trump says he will use to choose future Supreme Court picks.


The Bergen County Republicans

The “silent majority ” never appeared .

U.S. Sens. Bob Menendez and Cory Booker

Two more years in the minority for New Jersey’s U.S. senators. Menendez (DR) still an ethics cloud over his head , while lightweight Booker (Twitter) failed at race baiting .

Pollsters , Election Experts and Media Outlets

The Election Day results were as big of a loss for pollsters , the mainstream media was outed for being even more bias than everyone thought and the experts were wrong about every single issues ,every single day.

Barack Obama’s legacy

Trump campaigned on undoing the president’s legacy and scaling back or nixing the executive orders he signed while in office. Trump will look to turn back trade deals, climate deals, Iran Nuke deal and Dodd-Frank.
Bailout nation is over. October’s Obamacare bills , plus GOP control of the courts ,house and senate make repeal and replacement of Obamacare almost a given.

Kim Guadagno

Turned on Trump falling into ill repute with the GOP base ,gearing up for a 2017 gubernatorial run ,joined the ranks of GOP cowards.

U.S. Rep. Scott Garrett and Josh Gottheimer

Scott Garrett (R-5th Dist) lost in a highly contested contest to Clintonista Democrat Josh Gottheimer . Gottheimer ran a campaign based on name calling and is left rudderless with Clinton machine seemingly out of business. 7 term Garrett, will leave with a smile on his face when the Trump administration pushes through the “Garrett agenda” ie …repeal Obamacare ,repeal Dodd-Frank and cancel the Iran nuke deal.

But the Biggest Loser is the New Jersey Taxpayer

Yes, Voted down the foolish northern casinos , but said yes to the tax raising amendment as well as voted for all the campaigns that said they would raise taxes from Hillary,Gottheimer, Bergen Freeholders ,sheriff, and so on .