Monday was a prolonged session of lawmaking, in which more than 100 bills were sent to Gov. Christie's desk (read all about the new laws in the pipeline in our story here).
Moments after the final bill passed, Assemblyman Alex DeCroce (R., Morris) - the leader of the Republicans in the Assembly and a long-time mentor to Christie - died in the Statehouse. Here's our story in today's paper:
Hours after a veteran lawmaker died in the Statehouse, business turned upside down Tuesday, with the normally celebratory swearing-in of legislators taking a mournful tone and Gov. Christie delivering a eulogy instead of the scheduled State of the State address.
Minority Leader Alex DeCroce, 75, the top Assembly Republican and a mentor to Christie, collapsed late Monday, moments after casting the last of about 200 votes on the final, marathon day of the two-year legislative session.
CPR was administered by two state troopers, the Statehouse nurse and, finally, Assemblyman Herb Conaway (D., Burlington). Conaway, a doctor, pronounced him dead about 11:30 p.m.
"Last night, he fought the good fight on this floor right to the very end of his life," said a somber Christie, choking up at times during the 10-minute eulogy. "That's so often said metaphorically about people in this business, but for those of you who were here on this floor last night, you know that it was literally true about Alex."