TRENTON, N.J. — Democrats have a new leader in the New Jersey Assembly.
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto on Thursday announced he would not seek a third term as speaker and he endorsed Democratic Assemblyman Craig Coughlin to replace him.
Prieto’s announcement comes after Coughlin had announced his bid to oppose Prieto earlier this year. Prieto had clashed with powerful Democratic Senate President Steve Sweeney, who was re-elected by his caucus to head the chamber next year.
Senate Republicans picked Tom Kean (kayn) Jr. to once again be their minority leader. Assembly Republicans again picked Jon Bramnick to lead them.
The Assembly speaker and Senate president decide which bills get voted on.
The change in Assembly leadership comes as Democratic Gov.-elect Phil Murphy prepares to succeed Republican Gov. Chris Christie on Jan. 16.