New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday nominated Superior Court Judge David Bauman for the state Supreme Court.
If his nomination is approved, Bauman will be the first Asian-American to serve as a judge in New Jersey’s highest court.
Christie announced the nomination at a 3 p.m. news conference, saying Bauman’s qualifications are “unquestioned,” and citing the judge’s unanimous approval for lifetime tenure on the state Superior Court in May.
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Bauman, 59, currently presides in Superior Court in Monmouth County.
Former Gov. John Corzine first nominated Bauman to the state Superior Court in 2008.
Bauman’s credentials include service in the civil, criminal, family and general equity divisions of the state courts. He served four years in the United States Marine Corps and 12 years as a reservist. He is a 1986 graduate of Boston College Law School and a 1981 graduate of Columbia University.
Christie said his nomination of Bauman, a Republican, “preserves the tradition of partisan balance on the court,” and would bring its makeup to four Republicans, two Democrats and one independent. The tradition in New Jersey, Christie said, is that the governor does not have more than four members of his own party serving on the court.
The governor added that he hoped his choice of a judge who was unanimously approved for his Superior Court seat as recently as May would help to fill a six-year vacancy on the state Supreme Court, saying the state Senate is “playing politics” if it doesn’t approve Bauman’s nomination.
Christie refused to take any “off-topic” questions from reporters after his news conference announcing Bauman’s nomination and scolded any reporters who tried to ask him about anything other than Bauman.
Bauman thanked Christie for the nod and pledged to do “everything in my power to justify the honor” if his appointment to the Supreme Court is confirmed.