Senate Judiciary begins hearing of Supreme Court nominee Anne Patterson

TRENTON – “I believe I am well-prepared for the enormous responsibility you (are hearing me for) today,” Supreme Court nominee Anne Patterson told the Senate Judiciary Committee today after a year-long standoff on her appointment.

Patterson first started working in law at 14 years old, as a gopher and courier, which led her on a lifelong journey that lands her here today, she said.

Armed with a “profound respect for the Constitution,” she said, and charged as the “guardian of individual liberties,” Patterson said she is “honored and humbled” to be before the committee as a nominee of Gov. Chris Christie.

Two activist groups today took issue with Patterson’s defense of a handgun company in a lawsuit from Camden regarding gun safety. Patterson has primarily been a product liability counsel for the firm Riker, Danzig, Scherer, Hyland & Perretti, representing retailers such as Walmart and RJ Reynolds Tobacco.

State Sen. Tony Bucco, (R-25), of Boonton, introduced the associate justice nominee.

“I’ve known her for several years and know the quality of the person (before you),” he said. “Her credentials are impeccable.”

Chairman Nicholas Scutari, (D-22), of Linden, thanked Patterson for her patience as her appointment was held up for a year, following Christie’s unprecedented non-renewal of tenure for former Supreme Court Justice John Wallace.

“Certainly we’ll have a spirited debate,” he told her as the questioning began.

Senate Judiciary begins hearing of Supreme Court nominee Anne Patterson