The nomination of a replacement for Associate Justice John Paul Stevens will be the twelfth U.S. Supreme Court nomination during the 25 years Frank Lautenberg (D-Cliffside Park) has served in the United States Senate. This will be the third to court nomination since Robert Menendez (D-Hoboken) joined the U.S. Senate in 2006.
Lautenberg has voted yes on five Supreme Court nominations – Sonia Sotomayor, Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Anthony Kennedy, and Antonin Scalia — and no on six: Samuel Alito, John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Robert Bork, William Rehnquist, and David Souter. Lautenberg was among nine Senators to vote against Souter in 1990. Souter’s retirement created the opening for President Obama to nominate Sotomayor, who became the first Hispanic and third woman to serve on the nation’s top court.
Menendez voted yes on Sotomayor and no on Alito. During the year and a half Menendez spent in the New Jersey State Senate (1991 to 1992), there were no nominations made to the New Jersey Supreme Court.
Jon Corzine voted on one Supreme Court nomination during his five years in the Senate, casting a no vote on Roberts for Chief Justice. Bill Bradley voted on nine top court nominations while in the Senate from 1979 to 1997, supporting Breyer, Ginsberg, Kennedy, Scalia and Sandra Day O’Connor, and opposing Thomas, Souter, Bork and Rehnquist. No Supreme Court nominations were made during Robert Torricelli’s six years in the Senate.