The Former Governor resigned in disgrace but is making a comeback

I have a lot of respect for the guy, Jim McGreevey

I said it, I mean it, and that’s that.

Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey and Dominic Carter

Jim McGreevey, of course, the former Governor of the State of New Jersey who some 20 years ago resigned in a major national scandal, coming out as a “Gay American,” with his wife standing next to him. McGreevey had tried to put his male lover on the payroll who he met in Israel, as the statewide Director of homeland security. It blew up in his face, and then when the lover tried to blackmail McGreevey, the then-governor had to do the mea culpa before the world.

McGreevey now has the bug again and is looking at returning to politics as the mayor of Jersey City. New Jersey’s second-largest city behind Newark. And he should, especially considering all the good he has done since leaving office, quietly helping those who are less fortunate with prison re-entry programs.

McGreevey and I spoke the other day:

“If I didn’t go through that Dominic, I wouldn’t have had the appreciation, like sort of understanding people that is suffering from addiction, understanding guys and gals that made a wrong decision.”

“You learn about yourself, and you reflect, and you try to be the best possible person you can be…… and God willing to learn from your mistakes, and you move forward.

That’s the bottom line as I say in speeches all across the country and Canada. We all fall down in life; the question is do you get back up. McGreevey has dusked himself off, shaken by the embarrassment….and he can do a lot of good as Mayor.

He confirmed to me something that I already knew about life, but it’s sad when you think about it. Some people had been ridiculed for stating they were born gay. McGreevey confirmed to me, that he knew when he was about 5 or 6 years old. I thought how tough that must be for a child to try to work through that.

“I knew it when I was, you know, five or six years old. I had a better sense of eight or nine so that was my reality and so I just asked people if they have a son or daughter, if they have a niece or nephew, a brother or sister…. I mean part of it is just understanding that people struggle but to be honest and to be open, and to God willing accept people’s truths as it is and, and that’s important. And to help people live healthy, good lives.”

So why does McGreevey want to be mayor?

“So, I should say Dominic, I should have my head examined.”

McGreevey went on: “But you know if I can just let you know why being mayor is so important. “ I injected: “Go for it.” Go for it, Governor.

“Yeah, no, I think for me….. It’s three reasons. I mean, one, it’s, you know, I was mayor of Woodbridge, and it’s the level of being the level of government you can really make a difference in people’s lives, you can really make a change. Whether it’s, you know, making sure that a street as well paved making sure that traffic is it runs smoothly. Working to control property taxes, which is a problem in Jersey City, or making sure that you know, the educational system. You’re providing the fullest opportunities for young people. So, the first thing is the level of government where the rubber hits the road and it’s, it’s, it’s you’re going to materially see and when As the changes in people’s lives, I think the second thing is Jersey City’s at an interesting point.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

“You’ve got all this tremendous development downtown, and some of it, candidly, is a little pricey and $6,000 a month for an apartment rental.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

“And then you’ve got other areas in the city, in Greenville, Lafayette, which are really which are still challenged, doubt challenged by crime, challenged by the need for greater reinvestment. So, you have a bit of tension between two cities between the downtown city right across New York City and sort of the older neighborhood, which incidentally, my parents are from and my grandparents are from. So, I have that, you know, sort of emotional attachment to try to make sure you have investment but in workforce and affordable housing, which is so critically important.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

“You know, our realtor told me the other day, Dominic, that somebody was looking at a two-bedroom condominium, and the taxes on it worth $34,000 a year. And so that that’s more than the folks that go through the reentry program will earn a year. “ — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

“So that, you know, if we want to keep Jersey City Affordable, we have to make sure you have the right level of balance. So the first reason is because I love being mayor. It’s a level of government, where you’re, you’re hands on and you can make a difference. And then the second is, is that I see a tale of two cities. And you would like to make sure that that the city works for everyone. And then there were the specific issues. I mean, the specific issues of traffic, this specific issues of cleanliness, the specific issues of affordability, the specific issues of making an apprenticeship education system, so that if not everybody’s gonna go on to college, Dominic somebody can go on to become a plumber, or an HVAC or general electrician or phlebotomy. It’s making sure that people have the skills so they can compete in the workforce. And I think that’s important.”

We also talked about caring about those who are less well-off than others. This is the radio interview we did on WABC, of which this article is about.

“So I think what I understand in life is that, you know, we all share, we all share a sense of community, we all share a common need. And let me just say when I was when I was in seminary, and I was up at the Exodus transitional ministry and, you know, one of the things that I saw when guys coming out of prison. Abraham Maslow has that hierarchy of needs. So, you want food, you want shelter, medicine, but most importantly, and fundamentally, you want family and love and community. So those are cravings, not cravings in an unhealthy way. But those are basic needs, I guess that would be a better word. And so if you understand that, you can help rebuild lives.

“And when I see, you know, when I see guys, you know, 42 Guys, you know, signing up for UPS or Federal Express, when I see you know, 67 guys getting a job at a shop, right, as, you know, throughout New Jersey and rebuild their lives, and I, I walk in and they’ve been trained, and they’re you know, they’re slicing meats, or they’re, or they’re working in an apprenticeship training program, I see young woman taking blood for as a phlebotomist, and, you know, they had a chance and they had direction and they had training. So you know, there’s some folks that are bad, that will, probably should be in prison, the entirety of their lives. But overwhelmingly, a lot of folks didn’t have the opportunities I had. And, and so just giving them that opportunity, and holding them God willing, accountable.”

At one point I added:

You’re so popular Governor McGreevy, and I think you know that I don’t say something unless I really believe it. But that’s the luxury of when….I have been covering politics for 40 years, right? Yeah. So, I believe that you are so popular that I could see you as the governor of New Jersey, again. Do you ever see yourself as being the governor of New Jersey?-Journalist Dominic Carter

McGreevey laughed. He didn’t say no, but he says his last hurrah is being mayor of Jersey City.

“It’s just, you know, that’s the level of government you know, I love on the local level because you can make a difference, you can make sure the road is paved, you can make a streetlight work, you can make sure that there’s a stop sign, you can help control property taxes that are going through the roof, you can make sure like you can work to make, you know, education even better. But like when the state has so much of it, it’s about, you know, bluntly, and I guess it has to be about dollars and moving money and, and big dollars across a wide range of areas.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

We also talked about drugs… that are devasting America, like Fentanyl. To prove the point, sadly, McGreevey says there is no more heroin in heroin anymore.

“I see so many young people that are struggling and I see the rates of addiction and the fentanyl with heroin. That stuff. Three, three uses of fentanyl can change the neural passageways in the mind for a lifetime. I mean, the fentanyl is so brutally toxic is the synthetic opioid that’s coming from China that’s being cut in Mexico that’s now in everything, you know, and that’s what scares me. You know, the fentanyl is in is in cocaine. It’s in it’s in pills. It’s in heroin. I mean, like I…we actually test our guys and gals.”

There’s no Heroin Dom in the heroin anymore! There’s literally no Heroin in the quote-unquote, Heroin.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

An event Dominic Carter attended. Actor Michael K. Williams, who was sold a fatal fentanyl-laced bag of Heroin here in the photo with Jim McGreevey.

This is my last act. I can be really good at it.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

This was a question I thought to myself as I talked with McGreevey.

You don’t have a problem going from being Governor back to Mayor. – Journalist Dominic Carter

He laughed before responding.

“No, you know, at the end of the day, Dom as you get older God willing to get a little bit wiser. So you know, you follow your spirit you follow what you know, for me what you believe in your life is, is what you think is you know, you’re searching to do what’s right and so now it’s the level of government that I think I can make the best difference on the deaf and I can be hands-on and people will know I’ll work 24/7 And and I’ll like I’ll give my life’s blood to make this thing work.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

“This is, you know, this is my last act, and I think I could be really good at it. I’m hands-on. I’m accountable. I love Jersey City. I love the people. I love the community. I love the blocks, the streets, the neighborhoods, and I will work my hardest, my darndest to make this city work as best as it can be as efficient and squeeze the best, you know, make sure that every tax dollar works and is responsible.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

You’re about to kick off listening sessions that reminds me about when Hillary Clinton did her listening tour. – Journalist Dominic Carter

McGreevey says for him, it’s about listening to the voters.

“My dad used to say, you know, that’s why God gave us two ears and one mouth, so we listen twice as much as we talk. So that if you’re going to be really good, man, you got to listen.” — Former NJ Governor Jim McGreevey

Go Jim McGreevey go!!!!