Cory Booker declares candidacy for U.S. Senate

Cory Booker, mayor of Newark, New Jersey, has just announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate Credit: Getty Images
Cory Booker, mayor of Newark, New Jersey, has just announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate
Credit: Getty Images

Newark Mayor Cory Booker announced his candidacy on Saturday for a U.S. Senate seat for New Jersey and will run in a Democratic primary set for August to fill the seat of late Senator Frank Lautenberg.

“I do not run from challenges. I run towards them,” Booker said at a news conference in the city where he has served as mayor since 2006.

After the death of Lautenberg, 89, on Monday, Republican Governor Chris Christie called a special election to fill the remainder of the late senator’s term.

Booker, 44, had previously announced his intention to seek the seat when Lautenberg’s term expired in 2014 after the Democratic senator said he would not seek a sixth term.

Booker enters the primary race against U.S. Representative Rush Holt, a seven-term congressman. U.S. Representative Frank Pallone Jr. of Long Branch and state Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver are also widely expected to join the race.

Conservative activist Steve Lonegan, a former mayor of Bogota, New Jersey, is the only Republican who has officially declared his candidacy for the seat.

Booker said lawmakers in Washington need to work together to pass comprehensive immigration reform and gun safety laws that include stringent background checks.

He noted his efforts to work with Christie on the controversial expansion of charter schools in Newark, despite their political differences on issues such as marriage equality and the environment.

“People say that Washington is a lost cause, that DC is broken and that the two sides are too far apart,” Booker said. “I tell you today that I reject that attitude.”

SPECIAL ELECTION CRITICIZED

Democrats criticized Christie’s decision to hold a special election, calling it a calculated attempt by the governor to avoid appearing on the same ballot in November as Booker, who is among the state’s most popular Democrats.

The special election, including the August primaries and the general election three weeks ahead of the normally scheduled November election, will cost the state about $24 million.

Christie, who is leading his Democratic challenger for the governorship by more than 30 points, dismissed the criticism, saying New Jersey should have a voter-approved representative in the Senate as soon as possible.

On Thursday, Christie appointed a fellow Republican, the state’s attorney general Jeffrey Chiesa, to fill the seat until the general special election in October. Chiesa said he would not compete for the seat.

Booker is credited with bringing $1 billion in new development to Newark, including the city’s first new downtown hotel in 40 years and the relocation of major companies, including Panasonic, which is building a new North American headquarters in downtown.

Some people have criticized him for his prolific use of Twitter and media exposure.

“A lot of us in Newark feel that he’s been a terrible manager, and most people outside of Newark don’t know this,” said 70-year-old retiree and activist Bill Chappel. “Because all they know are Tweets.”

Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg, who in September 2010 pledged $100 million for Newark schools, will host a fundraiser in California for Booker in the coming days, campaign spokesman Kevin Griffis said, without giving any details.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Preachers rail at NYPD at Eric Garner's funeral

Preacher after preacher stepped up to the pulpit at a sweltering Brooklyn church on Wednesday to express fury at the city's police force during the funeral of Eric Garner, who…

Local

Newark schools probed after claims of race discrimination

The U.S. Department of Education said on Wednesday it was investigating complaints that a plan to reorganize public schools in Newark, New Jersey, discriminates against black students.

National

Dogs are capable of feeling jealousy - U.S.…

By Curtis Skinner(Reuters) - Dogs are a man's best friend, and research released on Wednesday says canines want to keep it that way.Dogs are capable…

Local

G train riders brace for five-week shutdown

G train service will be suspended between Brooklyn and Queens between Friday, July 25, and Tuesday, Sept. 2.

Going Out

Where to go drinking on National Tequila Day…

Thursday is just close enough to the end of the week to make you envision yourself already sunning on a beach towel or lounging by…

Going Out

Things to do in NYC this week: July…

Performing arts A 70’s Summer Night Friday, 6:30 p.m. The Green Building 452 Union St., Gowanus $35, 347-529-6473 Party like it’s summer in the 1970s…

Going Out

5 must-try dishes at Edible Manhattan's Good Beer

Rooting out the exotic amid the New York City bar scene is noble quest. But if you’d like to have it all come to you,…

Books

Art imitates life (almost) in David Shapiro's new…

David Shapiro talks about his book, "You're Not Much Use To Anyone."

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

MLB

Brandon McCarthy finds his calling on Twitter

Yankees starter Brandon McCarthy joined Twitter three year ago for the same reason many people do: to get news quickly.

Sports

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Fantasy football: Johnny Manziel could give your running…

Fantasy football: Johnny Manziel could give your running game a boost

Food

Recharge with a post-workout smoothie from Nicky Hilton

Some people can roll out of bed right as their alarm goes off. And that alarm isn’t set for 20 minutes before they have to…

Education

Colleges are increasingly embracing the concept of gender-neutral…

  Northwestern University recently made headlines after announcing that it would be installing two gender-neutral bathrooms in the university's student center. “These are two gender-open…

Career

How to prepare to interview for your dream…

    Congratulations! You landed a job interview at your dream company! A lot of hard work has gone into determining which companies to apply…

Style

The shirtdress is a summer must-have

  We love throwing on our boyfriend’s shirt and a pair of jeans (no matter how much he grumbles that it’s his turn to wear the…