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Wednesday, December 07, 2005

NJ-Sen: Menendez Looks Set to Replace Corzine

Posted by DavidNYC

So Rep. Bob Menendez (NJ-13) will apparently replace Jon Corzine as New Jersey's... I guess he now becomes the junior senator, though Corzine was the senior senator. (Somehow, it seems wrong for anyone to be "senior" to Frank Lautenberg.) I personally was rooting for Rep. Rush Holt (NJ-12). Ah well. On the bright side, Menendez has an enormous warchest already - $4 million and counting - which he'll need for the election campaign that pretty much starts right now.

His opponent is state Sen. Tom Kean, Jr., son of the popular former governor and 9/11 Commission chairman. This reminds me of a line from the Robert Redford movie "The Candidate." Redford plays Bill McKay, Democratic candidate for Senate in California. In an ominous voice, an election-day sound truck bellows, "What has Bill McKay done for California? Not much... but his father was governor." Life imitates art: Tom Kean hasn't done much for New Jersey either. But, you know, his father was governor.

In case you were worried, Menendez's district went for Kerry 69-31. Holding Holt's district would have been dicier, as it went for Kerry by just 54-46. Menendez, by the way, will become the third Hispanic member of the Senate, along with Ken Salazar (D-CO) and Mel Martinez (R-FL). Like Martinez, Menendez is Cuban-American.

Just a note: This hasn't been officially confirmed yet. I wonder if this could wind up like when the New York Post reported that John Kerry had tapped Dick Gephardt to be his running mate. That would be a hell of a thing!

Posted at 04:30 PM in 2006 Elections - Senate, New Jersey | Technorati

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we in FLORIDA elected martinez, not the californians...let us take full responsibility for putting that dreaded man in congress

Posted by: danny [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 7, 2005 05:28 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Whoops! Sorry about that. Don't know why I wrote R-CA - I fixed it. Maybe I had Bill McKay on the brain?

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 7, 2005 05:38 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Bad move, I hope that this all turns out to be false. Corzine is quite pissed about it, and Menendez has said pretty much nothing. Hopefully the rumor dies down and Corzine appoints someone great like Pallone or Holt (with Pallone more likely, since he's actively seeking the seat while Holt is just a speculation on the blogosphere).

Oh and Menendez is Dominican i thought...

Posted by: KainIIIC [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 7, 2005 08:09 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

1) I've definitely seen Holt mentioned in plenty of mainstream publications. He certainly hasn't gotten as much play as other names, but he's shown up in things like the National Journal and regular newspapers as well. I agree, though, that he doesn't appear to be a likely choice.

2) Menendez is definitely of Cuban origin.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 7, 2005 09:10 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Corzine made the politically expedient move here. Menendez has a financial warchest substantially higher than other perspective Dems jockeying for this Senate seat. Even if Corzine had went with Pallone or Holt, Menendez would have still ran in the primary and brought his superior financial warchest with him. Furthermore, there was so much pressure for Corzine to pick the Hispanic Menendez that we'd spend the next month hearing about the "arrogance" of Democrats taking the Hispanic vote for granted through lip service only. While I would have preferred Holt or Pallone, it's hard to imagine how Corzine would be able to get anything done after pissing off the New Jersey party bosses standing with Menendez.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 7, 2005 09:20 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment