TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have been offering their condolences and praising the career of longtime Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), who died early Monday at the age of 89.
Lautenberg’s term was due to end next year. Now, it will fall to Gov. Chris Christie to appoint a replacement to fill Lautenberg’s vacant seat. Christie had kind words to say about the senator’s passing even though the Republican governor and the fiercely Democratic senator didn’t see eye to eye.
“It’s probably more honest to say we didn’t often agree and we had some pretty good fights over time,” Christie told reporters, including CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
Christie could appoint a member of his party to fill the seat, which has been in Democratic hands for three decades.
Democratic State Senate President Steve Sweeney said the seat should go to a fellow Democrat.
“The governor should put a Democrat in the seat, that’s who won the seat,” Sweeney told WCBS 880’s Jim Smith. “People didn’t elect a Republican in that seat, they elected a Democrat.”