At the Star-Ledger, an appearance of a conflict?

Robert Schwaneberg is one of the Star-Ledger's most respected reporters — a true professional with the highest possible ethics. But his coverage of Governor Jon Corzine's recovery from a serious automobile accident two weeks ago offers a potential appearance of a conflict: last year, Corzine appointed Schwaneberg's wife, Helen Hoens, to the New Jersey Supreme Court.

If Corzine's ability to serve is ever challenged by the Legislature, it would be up to the Supreme Court to decide whether he could continue as Governor. The Star-Ledger has an exceptionally able team in Trenton, and it could be helpful to the people's long-term interests — which could include a constitutional crisis — if they helped avoid a situation where one of the seven Justices is forced to recuse herself.

At the Star-Ledger, an appearance of a conflict?