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New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg dies at age 89

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    Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) has died in office.

    Huffington Post: Frank Lautenberg Dead: New Jersey Senator Dies At 89

    "Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) has died at the age of 89 of viral pneumonia, The Bergen Record reported Monday, citing the senator's office.

    "Lautenberg had struggled with health issues earlier this year, missing more than six weeks in the Senate while in recovery.

    "New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) will name a replacement for the vacant Senate seat."

    Will Christie fill the vacancy with a Republican?
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    That's a very good question. He will no doubt be pressured from both sides, but I wouldn't be surprised if he just appoints someone to be a caretaker for the remainder of Mr. Lautenberg's term. Mr. Christie is beginning to showcase himself as trans-partisan after all that happened with Superstorm Sandy and appointing a far right individual would shatter that image.

    Frank Lautenberg was a great Senator and people like him will be missed in the upper chamber. He was unabashedly liberal and wasn't afraid to stick up for the weakest among us. I only wish that there were far more democrats in the Senate that were like him.
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    My guess is that he'll appoint his Republican Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno. She's running against Newark Mayor Cory Booker for the seat, and this appointment will give her exposure and an advantage in the 2014 Senate race. Bad luck for Booker.
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    Booker is the rising star, is he not? I can't see Christie helping him, but Christie goes against conventional wisdom quite a bit so who can tell?
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    While it is likely that Christie will appoint a Republican, I would not be that surprised if he didn't. Christie has a history of putting politics aside when faced with tragedies. Lautenberg will be missed though.