Tuesday's Winners Now Must Govern
By Stateline Staff
Republicans who won gubernatorial races in New Jersey and Virginia on Tuesday (Nov. 3) already are turning their attention to the very different challenge of governing during the Great Recession.
It's no secret what New Jersey's incoming governor, Chris Christie, was elected to do: reduce property taxes in the state with the nation's highest. "New Jersey could raise up its own army and invade Pennsylvania," The New York Times magazine wrote in a recent feature , "and all the state's voters would want to talk about, still, would be their property taxes."
A day after his victory, Christie acknowledged there was no "silver bullet" to reducing the state's property taxes, but he said he would address the problem by holding local governments more accountable and pushing for more shared services in towns and municipalities, The Record of Bergen County reported . As The Washington Post noted , however, current Gov. Jon Corzine (D) lost on Tuesday in large part for failing to make good on a similar pledge to rein in property taxes.
In Virginia, where Republican Robert McDonnell soundly defeated Creigh Deeds, McDonnell said on Wednesday that would he govern much the same way he campaigned -as a centrist - despite Democratic concerns that he is too ideologically conservative, The Washington Post reported .
McDonnell - who is limited to a single four-year term under Virginia law - will have very little warm-up time in his new job, given the fiscal pressures facing the commonwealth. "One of his first jobs," The Virginian-Pilot reported , "will likely be proposing deep cuts in state spending to deal with a budget shortfall of at least $1 billion."