Christie pick for N.J. high court advances

    Gov. Chris Christie’s first nominee for the New Jersey Supreme Court has cleared a major hurdle.

    The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Tuesday 11-to-1 to approve Anne Patterson’s nomination.

    Even though she has represented corporations in product liability cases, Patterson says she’ll be fair as a Supreme Court justice.

    “The role of a judge is to be impartial and open-minded and to see both sides or all sides of an issue,” said Patterson. “I’ve had a year in which to contemplate that role and that responsibility, and I am absolutely convinced that I can do an excellent job for the people of New Jersey.”

    Patterson told the committee she would not worry about being reappointed when making decisions on the high court.

    “I would never consider an issue with respect to potential tenure or whoever the governor will be seven years from now or for that matter whoever will be in the Senate seven years from now to impact a decision that I might make,” she said. “My decision will be my own.”

    Patterson said she never considered asking the governor to withdraw her nomination because of all the controversy over his decision not to reappoint Justice John Wallace.

    Her nomination now goes to the full Senate for a confirmation vote.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.