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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Thursday appointed state Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa to temporarily fill the seat held by the late Frank Lautenberg.

Chiesa, a Republican, will hold the seat until a special election, which Christie set for Oct. 16. Chiesa does not plan to run in that election, Christie said.

“I’m perfectly comfortable with that decision,” the governor added.

Lautenberg, who served nearly 30 years in the Senate, died Monday. With the selection of his replacement, New Jersey politicians will now focus on the special election as candidates begin to come out of the woodwork.

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