PolitickerNJ’s 2012 Power List

Welcome to PolitickerNJ.com’s 2012 Power List, this year’s installment of the 100 most powerful political players in New Jersey.

This list is subjective and ever-evolving. The Presidential election is sure to usher in some new players and dampen the careers of some old ones. Please keep in mind that, as usual, the list does not include elected officials, judges, or former governors.

As always, we gave special consideration to the power associated with the office of governor, one of the most constitutionally powerful governorships in the country. This sitting governor, Chris Christie, has a particularly acute sense of how to wield power, making use of the channels of government to get much of what he wants. That explains the dominance on the list of Christie confidantes and cabinet members.

Christie’s also most likely running for governor next year, sending into overdrive those operatives already intent on either getting him re-elected, standing in his way, or dealing with the reality of his political strength. New Jersey is still a blue state, where Democratic Party registration outnumbers Republican by 700,000 voters, and Democrats control both houses of the legislature.

With that in mind, we weighed heavily the power behind the Assembly and Senate, a fact you will see with our choice for number one.

Our third main 2012 consideration was the augmentation of power resulting from the most exciting New Jersey Congressional race in recent memory: the 9th District Democratic Primary. Look for the inclusion this year of key names on the list associated with the stunning victory of U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-9). If you’re on the list, congratulations.

If you’re not, we promise we’ll take a look next year. With that, we invite you to sit back, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy. Enjoy!

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"Since the print publication of this list, Christie, in his capacity as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, helped decisively turn the midterm elections in the Republicans' favor, which makes him a bit more influential than we initially gave him credit for, post-Bridgegate. So when your state governments do absolutely nothing for you for the next four years, be sure to thank him!"
—GQ