Debate in NJ Senate nearly comes to brawl

(AP) - Two lawmakers debating school fundingnearly came to blows on floor of the New Jersey Senate and had tobe physically separated.

Playing referee Thursday was Sen. Dick Codey - one-time governorand former Senate president - who stepped between Democrat RayLesniak and Republican Mike Doherty.

The disagreement started during a Doherty speech on educationfunding. When Doherty said too much money goes to urban areas,Lesniak started to say, "Not true."

After finishing, Doherty walked over to Lesniak's seat. Therhetoric quickly became more heated and the language more salty. Codey says he heard Lesniak tell Doherty he would "punch hisnose down his throat."

Doherty says he wasn't sure Lesniak was serious about that.Lesniak says he wasn't sure it would have come to blows but wasgrateful for Codey's intervention.

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