Stellato in the LD38 Aftermath Looks Ahead to Special Convention Next Week

The doors flung open.

The meeting was over.

Bergen County Democratic Committee Chairman Lou Stellato had met with both Assemblyman Joe Lagana and Assemblyman Tim Esutace, and, as everyone knew it would be, what with the committee votes in his favor, Lagana’s hand was in the air in the aftermath.

There were no hurt feelings, Stellato said.

Eustace backed Lagana for the seat being vacated by state Senator Bob Gordon (D-38).

“Oh yeah, no question,” Stellato told InsiderNJ. “Eustace endorsing his counterpart shows we’re a unified team.”

Lagana’s strenghs for the senate?

“Politics is a game for the young,” the chairman said. “He’s young, he has the street smarts, he served as a councilman so he knows local government. He has a knowledge of the law, working for one of the largest law firms in Northern New Jersey. And he has great people skills and the ability to deal with and converse with young and old. He’s the whole package.”

Lagana served as Council President in his hometown of Paramus. He works for Chasan, Leyner & Lamparello, P.C.

Stellato said he expects Gordon to submit a letter of resignation later today.

The Bergen Democrats in LD38 will have a convention to replace him with Lagana as soon as next week.

They will have a second convention by the end of the month (the statue gives them 35 days) to supplant Lagana in the Assembly. “By the end of April there should be no more snow,” Stellato cracked.

Bergenfield Council President Arvin Amatorio looks to be in a strong position to claim the seat, sources say.

In the event that Eustace leaves too (he really wanted the senate seat), the committee may be in a position to consider two assembly vacancies this year.

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