(TRENTON) – Assemblyman Albert Coutinho (D-Essex) on Thursday characterized the failure of Republicans in the Assembly to override Gov. Chris Christie’s veto of legislation (A-1678) that would have created a New Jersey new homebuyer tax credit program as an “insult to middle class families struggling to stay afloat.”
Despite initially supporting the bill 67-8-2 in the Assembly in May and 38-0 in the Senate in June, Republicans today unanimously turned their back on legislation designed to put families back to work and spur New Jersey’s economy out of its sluggish recession recovery.
Coutinho, the chairman of the Assembly Commerce and Economic Growth committee, and a driving force behind the initial round of economic recovery legislation passed in 2008, issued the following statement:
“By voting – to a person – against legislation they overwhelmingly supported just over four months ago, Assembly Republicans showed us all today that they are more beholden to Gov. Christie than they are to the very residents they purport to represent.
“The choice of the Assembly Republican caucus to support partisan politics over economic improvements for New Jersey residents is an insult to the unemployed and underemployed middle class families struggling to stay afloat in our state.
“Worse, their refusal to support the veto override consigns New Jersey’s real estate industry to an extended deep freeze that would have otherwise have been broken by this legislation.
“Every economic indicator points to the fact that New Jersey needs to do more to stimulate our economy if we are to do anything but maintain a post-recession status quo that has approximately 10 percent of our workforce unemployed.
“Instead, Assembly Republicans bowed to the politics of fear billowing from the governor’s office.
“Their actions today leave thousands of construction workers without jobs, hundreds of families unsure whether to pursue the American dream of homeownership, the state’s economy bereft of hundreds of millions of dollars from home sales and subsequent purchases and provide us instead with an economic recovery that will leave New Jersey firmly in last place.”