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Corzine and Christie begin with attacks

Yesterday I wrote here about an editorial's appeal for a clean general election campaign. Within hours of that post, Democrats and Republicans went for each others' throats with arguments that basically went: elect our man, because the other guy is terrible.

Gov. Corzine hit Republican nominee Chris Christie for the lack of specifics in his platform. Fellow Democrats called Christie an "ultraconservative" and tried to tie him to former President George W. Bush with a video of carefully-edited snippets of his public appearances.

Meanwhile, Christie went to a closed pipe foundry and blamed Corzine for the bad economy, saying the governor is out of touch with regular New Jerseyans who are out of work. The Inquirer's Cindy Burton had the details from both camps, as did the Star-Ledger.

It's quite early still, but so far neither side has said much of what they would do in the next four years. Corzine on Tuesday night said he would maintain New Jersey's "values" and be a partner with President Obama. But he avoided making new promises, even on some social issues he touted. For example, he criticized Republicans' stance on same-sex marriage, but pointedly did not call for approval of gay marriage himself. (He has said he would sign a gay marriage bill if it reached his desk, but has not pushed the issue publicly).

Christie, on the other hand, has said he would cut income and business taxes, but has not said by how much. He says he will increase property tax rebates, but again, has not said by how much or how he would pay for the new costs after slashing state revenues. Maybe Christie is being realistic, given that if he wins he'll have to work with a Democratic Legislature that is tough even on its own governor. But he also hasn't laid out much detail that voters and the press can evaluate, other than that he's not Jon Corzine.

The Record noted the lack of specifics in an editorial today, and called for more details.

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