By David Madden

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — For the second time in as many months, members of the New Jersey Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday voted down Governor Chris Christie’s nominee to the state Supreme Court.

Unlike Philip Kwon’s rejection — which went along strict party lines — Bruce Harris did get the support of one Democrat. The other seven on the 13 member panel voiced varying degrees of concern over Harris’s lack of courtroom experience.

There was also Harris’ promise not to decide on gay marriage because he advocated in favor of it as a gay man himself.

“You would have been fair,” said Vice-Chair Nia Gill, a Montclair Democrat. “And because I believe that about you, I believe your recusal was political in order to get the job.

Harris defended his decision citing public concern over bias.

“That would be the decision that would work for me because of my concern about the view of the court,” Harris explained. “I certainly recognize that not everybody agrees with that decision.”

Republicans countered Harris was one of the best lawyers in the state — and would likely have been forced to recuse himself on gay marriage anyway had he been confirmed.

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