Van Drew Captures Congressional Race, Desiderio Wins Freeholder

first_imgPolitical insiders say Democratic Congressman Jeff Van Drew may be going over to the GOP side in days to come. By Donald Wittkowski and Maddy VitaleDemocrat Jeff Van Drew defeated Republican Seth Grossman to win the hotly contested 2nd Congressional District race that pitted a moderate against a staunch conservative who aligned himself with President Donald Trump.In another key race, Cape May County Freeholder Leonard Desiderio, a Republican, easily outdistanced his Democratic challenger Jeremiah Schenerman, 63 percent to 37 percent, to capture his sixth term on the board that oversees county government.“It’s a great victory,” said Desiderio, who also serves as mayor of Sea Isle City. “I’m very humbled by the support I received across our county, especially in my home of Sea Isle City. I look forward to continuing my work for all residents of Cape May County – Republicans, Democrats and undeclared. I work for the people and have never forgot this.”In New Jersey’s U.S. Senate race, Democrat Bob Menendez won his third term, beating back Republican candidate Bob Hugin, a former pharmaceutical executive.Republican Seth Grossman speaks to reporters while awaiting election results to come in at his campaign headquarters.Meanwhile, Van Drew, 65, a state senator from Cape May County, appeared before his jubilant supporters at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to claim victory. Moments before, he was introduced by the announcer as “Congressman-elect Van Drew.”“I just wanted to come down and tell you, we won,” Van Drew exclaimed as the crowd erupted in cheers in a ballroom at the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City.Unofficial results show that Van Drew had 125,755 votes to 110,491 for Grossman.Van Drew called the race a “flashpoint” election that featured two opponents with dramatically different political views. Van Drew cast himself as a moderate, while Grossman, 69, touted his conservative credentials and support for Trump.With the retirement of U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo, the popular Republican who has represented South Jersey since 1995, the 2nd Congressional District was seen as a key battleground race for the midterm elections. Van Drew supporters erupt in applause at Democratic Election Night headquarters at the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City.Van Drew, a veteran lawmaker who has served in both New Jersey’s Assembly and Senate, becomes the first Democrat to represent the district since former Rep. Bill Hughes, who served from 1975 to 1994.“I want to be a very, very, very, very good congressman,” Van Drew told the crowd at Democratic headquarters.The 2nd Congressional District encompasses a vast swath of territory in the southern part of the state – eight counties and 92 towns. It includes the Jersey Shore towns, the Delaware Bay and some of the state’s most rural communities. Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland and Salem counties make up the core areas, with parts of Burlington, Camden, Gloucester and Ocean counties also included in the district.Addressing his supporters, Van Drew portrayed himself as a champion of South Jersey who is willing to fight the Washington establishment for his constituents. He criticized Washington’s rancorous partisan politics, suggesting that a resolution should be passed that would require all members of Congress to “behave like normal human beings.”“Washington, as we know, is dysfunctional,” he said.Van Drew receives congratulations from Sea Isle City attorney Beverly McCall, while her husband, Frank McCall, looks on.Giving a glimpse of his agenda as a new congressman, he vowed to fight a proposal by the Trump administration to open up the New Jersey coast for offshore drilling of gas and oil. Political leaders along the Jersey Shore have been united in their opposition to the Trump plan, warning of the possibility of an oil spill that could be catastrophic to tourism and the environment.Van Drew also called for more affordable healthcare, including coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. He also pledged to fight for better healthcare and social services for the nation’s veterans.He also stressed the need to protect South Jersey’s economy, particularly the small businesses sprinkled throughout the district.In contrast to the celebratory atmosphere Tuesday night at Van Drew’s gathering, the mood was somber at the Republican headquarters in the Linwood Country Club.Grossman concedes defeat at GOP headquarters at the Linwood Country Club.When it came time for Grossman to concede, he said, “I’d like to thank the 1,200 people who raised money for my campaign. We really got the message out. The organization was great and, who knows, we can always come back. We really had a heck of a ride for the last eight months.”Earlier, Grossman spoke to the media when it appeared clear the tide would go in favor of Van Drew.“I’m disappointed,” he said of not being able to get enough votes to capture the seat.He said while his campaign message was strong, he wasn’t so sure the effort of getting the vote out was there.Despite doing well in some counties and winning some communities, Grossman reflected back to his time when he ran for another office.“As one who got elected freeholder by one vote, you either win or lose,” he said.Grossman supporters appear somber when it became evident Van Drew was the winner.He also commented about the Washington Post declaring Van Drew the winner after Grossman captured the Republican primary in June. “The ordinary citizen is who kept me in the race when others wrote me off,” he said.Atlantic County Republic Chairman Keith Davis told the crowd that Grossman was a “guy who wasn’t supposed to win,” referring to the surprise primary victory.“This Atlantic County organization stood by him. He ran tirelessly,” Davis said.Grossman called himself the “most consistently conservative” of all the candidates. The former Atlantic City councilman and former Atlantic County freeholder has practiced law since 1975. He is also well known as a newspaper columnist and guest host on local talk radio.During his campaign, he blamed illegal immigrants for putting a strain on New Jersey and the nation’s welfare system, schools and police departments. He also criticized the Obamacare health system.last_img read more

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Pigeons Playing Ping Pong Appear On Adult Swim’s ‘FishCenter’ [Watch]

first_imgBaltimore-based funk quartet Pigeons Playing Ping Pong have a lot going on at the moment. The band is gearing up for a run of shows leading up to their return to Red Rocks Amphitheatre with Twiddle and the Kitchen Dwellers on May 2nd, following their appearance at SweetWater 420 Fest in Atlanta over the weekend.On Monday, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong made their Adult Swim debut with an appearance and musical performance on FishCenter. For those who may be unfamiliar, FishCenter is Adult Swim’s daily marine-themed call-in game show, hosted by Dave Bonawits, Andrew Choe, Matt Harrigan, and Max Simonet. The show features discussion over footage of various fish swimming in a fish tank, where they’re ranked according to their points.With members of the band clad in pool floaties, goggles, and snorkels, guitarist Greg Ormont took the lead on “The Liquid” and “Somethin’ For Ya”, two tracks off of Pigeons’ 2017 Pizazz LP. Bassist Ben Carrey and drummer Alex Petropulos locked into a tight-knit pocket, allowing lead guitarist Jeremy Schon to shower the Adult Swim program with a series of explosive guitar solos. Pigeons Playing Ping Pong took some time to answers questions from the show’s hosts, as well as fans calling in from afar. The band discussed their recent SweetWater 420 Fest set, their upcoming Domefest event, and their devoted fanbase, “The Flock.” Pigeons also played a series of comical games with callers before closing out their Adult Swim debut with a well-executed performance of “Poseidon”.Watch video of Pigeons Playing Ping Pong performing “The Liquid” and “Somethin’ For Ya” on FishCenter below:Pigeons Playing Ping Pong – “The Liquid” / “Somethin’ For Ya”[Video: Chris McCartney]Fans can head here to watch the full episode of Pigeons Playing Ping Pong on Adult Swim’s FishCenter.For ticketing information and a full list of Pigeons Playing Ping Pong’s upcoming tour dates, head to the band’s website.last_img read more

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Class Sports Strike Again

first_imgThis is not a blog on why we should have a one-system basketball tournament.  It is another story about what the results of that IHSAA decision caused.  As you have read on my blogs before, Indiana has most of the large high school field houses in the United States.  Two of these icons will possibly be gone in the very near future.  One of these icons is already not in use and the other will soon be abandoned.The 6,500 seat Muncie Central gym is literally rotting away.  In order to bring it up to code and safety concerns, it will cost the financially strapped Muncie school systems 3 million dollars.  They don’t have the money, and because of class basketball they don’t have the crowds to fill it.  The sensible thing is to sell the property and move on.The Wigwam in Anderson was a victim in 2011.  Rumor has it that it will be torn down in the very near future. There is no longer a need for a gymnasium that holds 9,000.  Besides the declining enrollment, there are not that many going to high school basketball games any more.Some of this information was obtained from an article in the Indianapolis Star.last_img read more

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Arrest made in West 37th Place shooting

first_imgThe Los Angeles Police Department announced Thursday afternoon the arrest of the suspect involved in the shooting of two USC students at an off-campus party Sept. 4.Tyson Tiree Smith, 21, was arrested Wednesday night in Signal Hill in Long Beach, Calif., LAPD Southwest Division Capt. Melissa Zak said.The Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office filled two counts of attempted murder and two counts of assault with a firearm against Smith, the district attorney’s office said.Two USC students, a male undergraduate student and a female graduate student, were shot early on the morning of Sept. 4 on the 1200 block of West 37th Place after a confrontation allegedly occurred between Smith and the victims.LAPD and DPS used photographic and video evidence from the crime scene to identify the suspect and track him down, Zak said.One shot was fired at the victims. The bullet hit the female student’s finger and then hit the male in the chest. The female victim performed CPR on the male victim likely saving his life, Zak said.Both victims were transported to California Hospital Medical Center. The female victim underwent surgery on her hand and the male victim underwent surgery on his chest. The female’s finger also likely saved the male victim’s life by slowing down the trajectory of the bullet, Zak said.The male victim was released from the hospital today and the female victim was released from the hospital early last week. Zak said.Rachel Bracker contributed to this report.last_img read more

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