Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris) released the following statement today regarding the Supreme Court confirmations of Chief Justice Stuart Rabner and Judge Lee Solomon.
Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) speaking in opposition to the reconfirmation of New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner and the confirmation of Lee Solomon to become a justice of the court during a Senate session on June 19, 2014. (SenateNJ.com)
“For years some of us have challenged our Supreme Court for its over-reaching judicial activism. I take very serious our separate but equal creed. I take more serious our founding fathers’ principle that all of us were created equally.
“Historically, this court has legislated school funding beyond our constitutional and legislative intent. This has lead to 22% of our state’s children receiving 60% of our states education funds. Unfortunately, the remaining funds must be divided by 80% of our students. When it comes to school funding this court has determined that the most important variable in school funding is a child’s zip code.
“I see no hope in these two Supreme Court nominees for that to change. I understand that some of ‘our’children – because of their circumstances – do need more resources.
“What I can not accept is that the court has been indifferent to the accountability of those resources and how they have affected all of our children. The court has determined that a child’s educational success is determined solely by the money that is brought into that district.
“I know that I will be in the minority in opposing these two nominees this day. However, I can not in good conscience validate past behavior with a yes vote. Some of us have been crying out for years to treat our children, my children fairly. I have committed to my constituents, my children, that I would voice for them these concerns in the Senate. I doubt very much whether these justices will hear what I say today. Sadly, I wonder if they will care.”