The latest rumor to come out of Bergen County is that Freeholder Valerie Vainieri Huttle will challenge County Executive Dennis McNerney in the 2006 Democratic primary. The rebel Democrat on Joseph Ferriero’s Freeholder Board, Huttle was briefly a candidate for State Senate after Byron Baer announced his resignation. She dropped out in support of Loretta Weinberg; in turn, Weinberg said that if she won the Senate race, she would back Huttle for her Assembly seat. Weinberg fell one vote short of going to the Senate (though the traditionally flaky New Jersey Judiciary could still change that), leaving Huttle without a seat to run for. Earlier this year, Weinberg also floated the possibility to taking on McNerney, although some insiders believed that move was calculated to gain Ferriero’s backing in her bid for Assembly Majority Leader. A County Executive primary could become interesting if their is a contest for the Democratic nomination for United States Senator. Hypothetically, if Ferriero gives the Bergen line to Congressman Robert Menendez, Huttle could run on a line with Congressman Rob Andrews. Struggling Bergen County Republicans continue to threaten a challenge in the general election for the post they held from 1986 to 2003 — Freeholder Lisa Randall, a former Assemblywoman and state Banking and Insurance Commissioner, and former Freeholder Todd Caliguire, who ran for Governor in 2005, are the most frequently mentioned candidates.