Joseph Doria becomes the first former Assembly Speaker to serve in the Governor's cabinet since Joseph LeFante, also a resident of Bayonne, became Brendan Byrne's Commissioner of Community Affairs in 1978. LeFante became Speaker in 1976 and helped Byrne shepherd the state income tax through the Assembly.
When Dominick Daniels retired from Congress after eighteen years, LeFante ran for his seat and won — albeit by an unusually narrow margin over an unknown and unfinanced Republican who criticized LeFante's support of the income tax.
After newly-elected Jersey City Mayor Thomas F.X. Smith took control of the Hudson County Democratic Organization following his 1977 election, he pledged to return the House seat to Jersey City and suported Frank Guarini, a former State Senator and Hudson County Democratic Chairman. LeFante accepted his fate and retired; he left Congress a few weeks early when Byrne gave him the consolation prize at DCA. LeFante sought the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination in 1982, but lost the primary to Frank Lautenberg.