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Assemblywoman Joann Downey in 2021. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for the New Jersey Globe).

Senate committee approves Downey for judgeship

Former assemblywoman will go to full Senate along with nine Superior Court nominees

By Joey Fox, March 21 2022 3:08 pm

Former Assemblywoman Joann Downey (D-Freehold), who flipped a Monmouth County Assembly seat in 2015 but lost re-election last year, today received the unanimous support of the Senate Judiciary Committee for a judgeship on the Workers’ Compensation Court.

Downey’s nomination to the court was made by Gov. Phil Murphy in January. Accompanying her in Trenton today was former Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling (D-Neptune), her former running mate who also lost his seat last year.

“This is probably the last time that Eric Houghtaling and I will drive together to Trenton,” Downey said.

Also advanced by the committee today were nine nominees for the Superior Court, two of whom – Aravind Aithal and Gregg Rubenstein – were part of a package of Superior Court judges Murphy nominated on February 28; the other seven were current judges up for new terms.

The next Senate session is scheduled for this Thursday, March 24, making the rapid confirmation of today’s nominees very likely.

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