The pulling of the nomination late Friday is another wound to an administration facing its most difficult test so far.
The Republican governor hoped to send acting Attorney General John Hoffman to the bench and clear a spot for his chief of staff, Kevin O'Dowd, to become attorney general.
But Democrats have delayed O'Dowd's confirmation hearing indefinitely because of the apparently politically orchestrated closing of approach lanes to the George Washington Bridge that caused traffic chaos in Fort Lee.
O'Dowd had supervised the aide who was fired for her involvement.
Three other key associates of the governor are also now gone as a result of the bridge scandal.