As Gov. Jon Corzine prepares to for the gubernatorial debates, he has asked Senate Majority Leader Stephen Sweeney (D-West Deptford) to play his Republican opponent, former U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie. That may cause some buzz among Democrats who have noticed that Corzine did not ask Senate President Richard Codey (D-Roseland), who was New Jersey's Governor from 2004 to 2006. Sweeney is expected to challenge Codey in a leadership fight set for after the general election.
Christie has picked State Sen. Bill Baroni (R-Hamilton) to play Corzine. Baroni has played Corzine in Republican U.S. Senate candidate Bob Franks' 2000 debate preparations, and played U.S. Senator Robert Menendez when Republican Tom Kean was preparing for his 2006 debate.
Corzine used another South Jersey Democrat, U.S. Rep. Rob Andrews (D-Haddon Heights) to play Republican Douglas Forrester during his 2005 debate prep.