Incoming Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D-West Deptford) is threatening to block Gov.-elect Christopher Christie’s nominations if Republicans block Edward McBride, Gov. Jon Corzine’s Chief of Staff, from a Superior Court judgeship, according to sources close to Sweeney. Sweeney and McBride are longtime friends and the South Jersey Democratic leader is reportedly upset that the amiable McBride, who has struggled with the political skills normally demonstrated by a governor’s top aide, has become part of a fight between the outgoing and incoming administrations over lame duck appointments. Staffers from both sides of the aisle expect Corzine and Christie to reach an agreement on appointments before the Senate returns for their final sessions just after New Year’s Day.
McBride lives in Pennsauken (where Sweeney grew up), and State Sen. Diane Allen (R-Edgewater Park) has senatorial courtesy over that Camden County town, since it is in her legislative district.