Report: Cory Booker Will Run For Senate, Not New Jersey Governor

Cory Booker

Cory Booker, the Newark Mayor who has made a national name for himself and has been widely viewed as perhaps the most formidable potential challenger to Chris Christie in 2013, has reportedly decided to seek a path to Washington:

Newark Mayor Cory Booker will not challenge New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in next year’s gubernatorial race and will instead run for U.S. Senate in 2014, political sources familiar with his decision tell NBC 4 New York.

Booker will seek the U.S. Senate seat held by fellow Democrat Frank Lautenberg when his term is up in 2014, political sources tell NBC 4 New York. Lautenberg, 88, is the oldest current senator. He first served in the U.S. Senate from 1982 to 2001 and has served since his re-election in 2003.

Booker’s decision not to challenge Christie comes as the Republican incumbent enjoys record-high approval ratings in polls taken since Sandy hit the Garden State.

Booker will apparently make the decision official via an announcement on his Twitter feed later today.

Without a doubt, this certainly has a major impact on next year’s Governor’s race in the Garden State. Christie’s poll numbers remain high in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and Booker has both a large statewide profile and access to prolific fundraising sources. While things are by no means certain, it seems fairly clear that this is good news for Christie’s re-election prospects. As for the Senate race, it’s widely anticipated that Senator Lautenberg will not stand for re-election at the end of his current term, leaving the seat open. While Booker is by no means a shoe-in for the Democratic nomination, he’s certainly going to be a strong contender and, in all honesty, whoever wins the Democratic nomination in 2014 will likely win the General Election.

FILED UNDER: 2013 Election, 2014 Election, US Politics, , , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. edmond says:

    Gee, I wonder if Lautenberg knew he was retiring?

  2. Tsar Nicholas says:

    I guess it means barring a meteor strike we can expect to see Christie in ’15-’16, as a reelected governor, seeking the GOP Prez nomination. That’ll be interesting. Perhaps in the same vein of a train wreck.

  3. edmond says:

    @Tsar Nicholas:
    Trains weigh less.

  4. Budgie93 says:

    A prudent choice.

  5. stonetools says:

    I think this is a wise choice for Corey. In the mean time, he better work harder at being mayor of Newark, instead of being the President of Twitterland. There are complaints against him on that score.

    Prediction: Christie will NEVER be the Republican Presidential nominee in the Republican Party’s current configuration. In particular, I don’t foresee him winning the all important South Carolina primary. Its unpossible.

  6. Kylopod says:

    >In particular, I don’t foresee him winning the all important South Carolina primary.

    If you recall, Romney got trounced in the SC primary by Newt Gingrich. Not exactly what I’d call “all important.”

  7. stonetools says:


    Still don’t think he can win, unless ,like Romney, he moves WAAAAAAAAAAY over to the right. Well, we’ll see.

  8. bill says:

    why not, better pay and you can just move in and never leave!