Tag Archive: appointment

Chris Christie Can Show True Bi-Partisan Chops with Senate Appointment

Gov. Christie has called a 1:30pm press conference with speculation heavy he’ll use it to name a successor to Lautenberg. Promoted by Rosi

Senator Frank Lautenberg’s passing gives New Jersey Governor Chris Christie an opportunity to burnish the “bipartisan” credibility he has so carefully built. Or he can show himself to be a partisan more interested in helping his party than respecting the people’s will.

Every analysis I’ve seen up ’til now has named Republicans Christie could appoint, but for 40 years the voters of New Jersey have repeatedly sent Democrats to the United States Senate.  That means roughly every voter 58 an under has been part of elections that sent only Democrats and no Republicans to the US Senate.

If there were occasional Republicans in there, then replacing an individual Senator named Lautenberg with a Republican named Kyrillos or Kean might make sense.  But there are none, and the will of the people is clearly to send Democrats to the Senate, regardless of the individual.  The electorate has clearly spoken in saying that they do not want Republicans representing them since Clifford Case won reelection in 1972.

Filling U.S. Senate Vacancies by Election in NJ

Promoted by Rosi Efthim

In 1913, the 17th amendment to the U.S. Constitution finally gave the citizens of the country the right to elect their U.S. Senators. But it left a gaping loophole when Senate seats are vacated, allowing state legislatures to determine how to fill them – unlike House vacancies, which must be filled by election. A few states require elections by statute. Most others allow the governor to single-handedly pick the replacement, including New Jersey.

This year, as Senators have resigned to join the Obama administration, governors have chosen replacements in Illinois, New York, Colorado and Delaware – and New Hampshire will soon join the list. In several of these cases, besides being undemocratic, the process has not been a pretty sight.

Senator Russ Feingold has introduced a constitutional amendment to fill Senate vacancies by election. That will take a 2/3rds vote of both houses of Congress and ratification by 3/4ths of the state. But each state is free to make the fix on its own. Any support for passing a statute in NJ to require filling U.S. Senate vacancies by popular election?