BY TOM HESTER SR.
The way Gov. Chris Christie sees it, the reshaping of New Jersey’s 40 legislative districts in what he believes was in favor of Democrats is the main reason Republicans failed to make any gains in the Assembly and Senate on Tuesday.
The GOP actually lost a seat in the Assembly to redistricting, one held by Dominick DiCicco (R-Gloucester), a one-term lawmaker who grabbed a spot usually held by a Democrat two years ago.
The Democrats now control the Assembly 48 to 32 and their majority in the Senate is unchanged at 24 to 16.
Addressing reporters in Newton Wednesday, the governor said, “The fact is, they won one seat that they really won back in April,” Christie said. “The map pretty much did what we thought the map would do… I was no guarantor of results here.”
“There were no competitive races last night – none,” he said.
Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex), the state Democratic chairman, offered heavy criticism of Christie Tuesday night and he continued in a conference call with reporters Wednesday.
“Tuesday night was a clear indication that New Jersey had enough of Governor Christie and Republicans who march in lock step with him without asking questions,” Wisniewski said.
Christie said the election was not a referendum on his administration. “We were on offense everywhere; they were on defense everywhere,” the governor said. “There wasn’t one Republican threatened last night throughout New Jersey.”
“He clearly wanted to be a factor in this election by injecting himself in his TV commercials and personal appearances,” Wisniewski countered. “The state of New Jersey is quickly increasing in its Christie fatigue index.”
After his press conference, Christie headed for New Hampshire to campaign for GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
On Thursday, the Assembly Democrats will caucus to select the speaker for the next two years. Wisniewski is backing Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver (D-Essex) who is expected to be challenged by Assembly Majority Leader Joe Cryan (D-Union).