Governor Christie on New Jersey Supreme Court’s Abbott Ruling – 844-292-1318 New Jersey legal aid

May 24, 2011: Governor Christie issued this statement regarding today’s Supreme Court’s Abbott District Ruling.


Today’s ruling by the State Supreme Court is disappointing, but not unexpected.

There are several reasons why I believe this decision represents everything that’s wrong with how Trenton has historically operated and everything that I am here fighting to change.

First, as a fundamental principle, I do not believe that it is the role of the State Supreme Court to determine what programs the State should and should not be funding, and to what amount.

The Court should not be dictating how taxpayer dollars are spent and prioritizing certain programs over others. The Supreme Court is not the Legislature; it should not dictate policy, it should not be in the business of discussing specific taxes to be raised and it should not have any business deciding how tax dollars are spent. A number of the members of the current Supreme Court agreed with that very position in today’s decision.

Those responsible for making decisions regarding how money is raised through taxes and how it is spent by government are those elected by the people and ultimately held accountable by the people.

Secondly, I believe the Court’s decision is based on a failed legal and educational theory that incorrectly reasons the key to establishing a thorough and efficient system of education is to throw more money at failing schools.

Let me be clear, I do believe funding education is critically important to New Jersey’s future. Even before today’s Court decision, we increased education aid by 0 million to every school district in this year’s proposed budget.

But, we must also acknowledge that money does not equal quality results. And there is now nearly 30 years of evidence that just throwing money at the problem is not the answer.

We should be getting better results with the taxpayer money we already spend and we aren’t which means changing the educational system goes beyond dollars and cents.

However, as Governor of New Jersey, I realize that regardless of my personal beliefs, I must comply with the New Jersey Constitution as interpreted by the New Jersey Supreme Court. In February, I submitted my budget to the Legislature for review and consideration. That is my constitutional obligation. Now the legislature has until June 30th to fulfill its constitutional obligation to pass a final budget.

In the light of the court’s ruling, it is now up to the Legislature to determine how the State is best able to fund the additional 0 million in aid to the Abbott districts specifically ordered in footnote 23 by the Court’s majority while also meeting the State’s other funding priorities as I proposed them. I have complete confidence that the Legislature understands its unique constitutional obligation to send a balance budget to me by June 30th. I am also confident that the Legislature understands its independent constitutional obligation to comply with the Supreme Court’s order in whatever budget they send to me for my consideration by the June 30th deadline.

I fully expect the Legislature will send me in a timely manner for my review and consideration a constitutionally balanced budget that includes how the Court’s order will be met.

My principles remain the same. New Jersey has some of the highest taxes in America. New Jerseyans are already incredibly overtaxed. Therefore, as I have repeatedly stated, I do not believe raising taxes is the answer. That has not changed.

I stand ready to execute my constitutional duties and consider what the Legislature submits as its final budget to me by June 30th.
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16 thoughts on “Governor Christie on New Jersey Supreme Court’s Abbott Ruling – 844-292-1318 New Jersey legal aid”

  1. Get rid of the higher up bloat who do not add to educating students. A teacher should not have to bring their own toilet paper and sweat in a room with no windows. I really do believe parents should also take responsibility for ill behaved children and be called in for meetings with the principal & teacher to discuss discipline issues in both the home and at school. 

  2. Abbott districting has been a complete failure to the taxpayers of NJ. If the people of NJ knew that the 31 Abbott school districts receive more state funding than the other 572 combined there would anarchy. Education is 60% of the real estate tax bill in the State of NJ.Getting rid of Abbott districting would reduce the education portion of peoples real estate taxes by 50%. That is how you make a real impact on taxes in the #1 tax state.

  3. The Sup. Ct. of NJ is activist but they are not political. Abbott doctrine has been upheld by Dem and Rep Chief Justices. When the first Abbott decision was passed in 1985, fundamental State Constitutional rights to receive a thorough and efficient public education were being violated. The Court reasonably decided that at least one cause was that schools were funded at the county level. The Sup. Ct. could not ignore a challenge that its citizens were being denied equal protection of the law.

  4. It is NOT teh role of the state supreme court to engage in legislative matters. Unreal this is a classic example of judicial activism. The libs like that when it is in their favor BUT look out if the decision goes the other way. 30 years of evidence, yeah liberals don't understand that word.. they will reply , but I FEEL it is the right thing to do.. Does the NJSC know how our government works, 3 branches and all.? De-fund the NJSC lol God Bless Christie !!

  5. @danielxu94560
    The NJ State Supreme Court has just over stepped it bounds of power. They have stuck their collective noses into spending tax revenue on what is called Abbott districts. Abbott districts were set up years ago to "even up" all the schools budgets in the State of NJ. Well, we have found out that the children in the31 districts, even though 14 thousand$'s a year has been spent on them, they are functional illiterates and cannot read at the 7th grade level. The "judges" R incompetent

  6. It's a shame that a pile of ruling judges sitting ensconced and isolated from the citizens on New Jersey, and accountable to NO ONE, can make state fiscal policy that directly affects the livelihood, and welfare of the taxpayers (not just the taxpayers who are card-carrying members of the NJEA – but the rest of the majority who actually FUND the NJEA). This is NOT what the framers of the Constitution meant when they created three branches of government and this is a travesty. Fight on NJ!

  7. Clever strategy Christie is using. He disagrees with the court's ability to do this, but he tacitly accepts it and says it's the legislature's responsibility to figure out how to fund this. BUT, Christie still expects a balanced budget to be sent, and he will not raise taxes. Something else must be CUT, which the legislature won't want to do.

    He sets the Supreme Court and Legislature against each other on this issue, rather than fight against it himself. Absolutely brilliant politics.

  8. “There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat. And we must take the current when it serves, or lose our ventures.”

    Run for the GOP Presidential nomination, Governor Christie!!

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