New Jersey Gov. Dumps State's Only Black Supreme Court Justice

Chris Christie was determined to make the court more conservative and Justice John Wallace got the hatchet.


New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is determined to make the New Jersey Supreme Court more to his liking and did so by replacing John Wallace, a Democrat and the only African American on the bench, with Anne Patterson, a white Republican

[A] coalition of African-American leaders blasted Gov. Chris Christie’s decision not to re-nominate state Supreme Court Justice John Wallace late last week at the Statehouse.

Christie has long criticized the Supreme Court as too liberal. Wallace was nearing the end of a seven-year term and Christie simply refused to reappoint him even though reappointment had been the practice even when a governor had political differences with a judge.

In fact, this is the first time since 1947 that a New Jersey governor has not reappointed a judge who had completed an initial seven-year term.