Christie campaign manager to lead state GOP

Posted: January 09, 2014

Gov. Christie's campaign manager is set to become chairman of the New Jersey Republican State Committee following the departure Tuesday of the organization's current head.

After Samuel Raia announced his resignation Tuesday, he and Christie endorsed Bill Stepien for the job. A spokesman for the state GOP said it would vote on the matter in the coming weeks.

"No one better understands how to grow our party, communicate our message, and, most importantly, win elections," Christie said in a statement released by the party committee. Christie called Stepien "the best Republican operative in the country" and added, "New Jersey Republicans will be fortunate to have him leading our party."

Stepien managed both Christie's campaigns for governor and also served as his deputy chief of staff from 2010 to 2012.

Stepien will continue to advise the governor in another role. Last month, the Christie-led Republican Governors Association hired Stepien as a consultant.

In announcing his resignation, Raia said the committee had surpassed its goals during his three-year tenure and "laid the groundwork for the future success" of the party.

Vice Chair Lynda Pagliughi will be acting chair until a vote for a permanent replacement.


aseidman@phillynews.com

856-779-3846

@AndrewSeidman

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