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Former Gov. and Current Senator Not Sold on Supreme Nominee

Dick Codey
Dino Flammia, Townsquare Media

Last week, Governor Chris Christie made two nominations to the New Jersey State Supreme Court. It would be history making for the state if both are confirmed. Bruce Harris is the recently elected Mayor of Chatham and a lawyer with over 20 years of legal experience. Phillip Kwon is a First Assistant Attorney General in the Department of Law and Public Safety and former Deputy Chief of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division.

If confirmed, Harris will become the third African-American to serve on the State Supreme Court and the first openly gay member of the Court and Kwon will become the first Asian-American to serve on the Supreme Court and the first immigrant to serve since the 1947 Constitution created the Court. Justice Anne Paterson, nominated by Governor Christie and confirmed, created the first female majority in the history of the Supreme Court, one of only five in the nation.

Former Governor and current State Senator Dick Codey has some problems with the Harris nomination.

“While I will reserve my judgment on the current nominees until after the Judiciary Committee has had a chance to hear from them, I have serious reservations about Mr. Harris’ qualifications for the Court,” says Codey. “So far, all we know about Mr. Harris, outside of his resume, is that he hasn’t been a partner in his firm, has never argued in a courtroom, and apparently would recuse himself from one of the biggest potential issues that might come before the Court. This does not leave me with much confidence.  I will await his appearance before Judiciary, but there is much that needs to discussed and resolved in that time.”

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