Home>Highlight>Key Essex Dems commit to backing Murphy’s millionaires tax

Gov. Phil Murphy, center, with Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo, left, and Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, in a private meeting with Essex County elected officials in East Orange on April 4, 2019.

Key Essex Dems commit to backing Murphy’s millionaires tax

Codey, DiVincenzo reportedly endorse plan

By David Wildstein, April 05 2019 4:31 pm

Gov. Phil Murphy appears to be gaining support for his proposed millionaire’s tax among the Essex County legislative delegation, according to four sources who attended a closed-door meeting for elected officials on Thursday.

Two state senators – Richard Codey (D-Roseland) and Ronald Rice (D-Newark – committed their votes, as did three members of the Assembly: Mila Jasey (D-South Orange), Ralph Caputo (D-Nutley) and Britnee Timberlake (D-East Orange).

A fourth assemblyman, John McKeon (D-West Orange), endorsed the proposal to increase the income tax on households with annual incomes of more than $1 million on March 5.

The millionaire’s tax also won the backing of two powerful Essex Democrats: county executive Joseph DiVincenzo and Newark mayor Ras Baraka.  Both announced their support at the meeting with Murphy, all the sources confirmed.

Senate President Pro-Tempore Teresa Ruiz (D-Newark), Assembly Budget Committee chair Eliana Pintor Marin (D-Newark) and Assemblywoman Cleopatra Tucker (D-Newark) attended the meeting but did not take a position on the issue.

Three other Essex legislators – State Sen. Nia Gill (D-Montclair), Assemblyman Thomas Giblin (D-Montclair) and Assemblywoman Shanique Speight (D-Newark) – were not in attendance.

Codey made reference to an independent poll released that morning showing that 72% of New Jerseyans back the millionaire’s tax, with Democrats supporting the proposal by a 90%-10% margin.

“The 10% of the Democrats are in the Legislature,” Codey reportedly quipped.

At one point during the meeting, Codey sneezed.

“God bless you,” Murphy said.

“That’s not what you said to me when I refused to vote for (the legalization of) marijuana,” said Codey.

“The blank you was consistent,” retorted Murphy.

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