Thigpen: Lautenberg’s successor won’t be able to deliver the way he did

Phil Thigpen, Democratic Party county chairman of the largest Democratic county in the state, mourned U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg’s (D-NJ) decision not to pursue re-election.

“Senator Lautenberg brought home the bacon,” Thigpen of Essex County said. “Whoever follows him won’t be able to do what he did. A new guy won’t be able to deliver like he did.”

U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone (D-6) and Newark Mayor Cory Booker are both in the hunt for the seat.

Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) hasn’t ruled it out, and neither has Speaker Sheila Oliver (D-34).

“At least Frank Pallone has some experience down there,” Thigpen said, a dig at Booker. “It’s too bad Lautenberg is going to go. Neither Pallone nor Booker will be able to deliver like Lautenberg, eventually they will.”

"This meeting is entirely off the record. Until somebody leaks it."
—Michael Kempner, addressing a roomful of Democratic powerbrokers organizng for Hillary Clinton