Dawn Addiego will sit with the Democrats today – her first Senate session since switching parties on Monday.
Addiego’s desk on the Senate floor has been moved to the third row on the Democratic side, where she will sit between Sandra Cunningham (D-Jersey City) and Nilsa Cruz-Perez (D-Barrington).
Ironically, that’s where Jeff Van Drew used to sit until he resigned on January 1 to take his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Addiego might be replacing Van Drew as the most conservative member of the New Jersey Senate Democratic caucus.
Van Drew’s replacement, Bob Andrzejczak, sat at that desk for his first two weeks in the Senate. He’s now been moved to the other side of the chamber, still in row three, between Joe Cryan (D-Union) and Christopher Connors (R-Lacey). That’s where Jim Holzapfel (R-Toms River) used to sit.
Some other Senators are having their desks moved as a result of Addiego’s party switch.
Declan O’Scanlon (R-Little Silver) is taking Addiego’s old desk in the second row, between Steve Oroho (R-Franklin) and Joe Pennacchio (R-Montville). O’Scanlon used to sit at the last desk at the end of the third row. Jim Holzapfel (R-Toms River) will now be there.
The last time a sitting State Senator switched parties was in 2001, when eight-term Democrat Raymond Zane, dumped by Gloucester County Democrats who were backing Sweeney for the Senate, switched to the Republican Party.
Before the switch, Zane sat in the front row on the Democratic side, between Bernard Kenny (D-Hoboken) and John Adler (D-Cherry Hill).
When he became a Republican, Zane’ seat was moved to the back row on the Republican side, next to the newest GOP Senator, Kevin O’Toole (R-Cedar Grove).