New Jersey Democrats are renewing their fight to overhaul operations at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
But to get their way they’ll have to do something they’ve never done before: override a Chris Christie veto.
In a conference call with reporters Thursday, New Jersey’s Democratic leadership vowed to push forward with a bill that initially passed with unanimous support before it was shot down by Christie.
“We passed a strong reform bill, the Republicans voted for it, and it’s well, well past time that we turn it into law,” said Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg.
“We’ve seen the damage that can come from the lack of transparency and accountability at the Port Authority,” she said. “Our bill is the only legislation in the two states that truly addresses all the problems.”
Last fall, in response to 2013’s Bridgegate scandal and investigation, legislators in New York and New Jersey unanimously passed reform bills that would strengthen accountability and oversight at the Port Authority.
But governors from both states eventually vetoed the measures. Weinberg and her fellow Democrats will need just two Republican votes to override Christie’s veto. But that job is trickier now that New Jersey Republicans have crafted a Port Authority legislative proposal of their own. Democrats call the GOP bill a “watered-down” version of the original, but Republicans say the “hybrid” bill builds in good ideas from Christie.
The New Jersey Senate is scheduled to vote on the override attempt March 16.