TRENTON – Late in the day, an argument erupted on the Senate Judiciary Committee as Democrats battled state Sen. Kevin O’Toole (R-40) over the issue of transparency around Supreme Court nominee Phil Kwon.
Senate Committee Chairman Nick Scutari (D-22) complained about lack of materials supplied by Kwon, prompting an enraged O’Toole to rush to Kwon’s aid.
“It’s unprecedented to have leaked documents,” O’Toole fumed, referring to a nominees’ questionnaire that appeared in the Star-Ledger.
“You wonder why this nominee or the other nominee doesn’t want leaked documents,” the senator added. “They have been treated differently than any other nominee in history.”
State Sen. Nia Gill (D-34) objected, saying the committee lacked critical materials.
“We were not permitted to deal with the issues of taxes and tax reviews, and that is why we went in the private session, and we all abided by the agreement that because of the restrictions placed upon the issue of confidentiality by the governor’s office,” Gill said.
State Sen. Gerald Cardinale (R-39) sided with O’Toole.