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Cory Booker Wins New Jersey’s Open Senate Seat

Cory Booker Wins New Jersey’s Open Senate Seat

| On 17, Oct 2013

Cory Booker U.S. Senate Newark New Jersey mayor

Cory Booker is pictured at the Democratic National Convention in 2012. (Photo by Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Congratulations goes out to one of my favorite (hard to believe I have a favorite, huh?) politicians, Newark Mayor Cory Booker!

That won’t be his title much longer as he just clinched a much-anticipated win in the race to be the next U.S. senator from New Jersey. Booker beat Steve Lonegan, a Republican, by a 55-44 percent margin. Both candidates were running in the special election to replace Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who died in June at age 89.

Booker need not hang up his campaigning shoes just yet. The race he won will ensure him a spot in the Senate only until January 2015, which would have been technically the end of Lautenberg’s term. He must run again in the 2014 election if he wants to earn a full six-year term in the chamber.

Clearly, Booker was the favorite in the election. His fundraising outpaced Lonegan’s. The social media world loves him, as he has over 1.4 million Twitter followers. He has also held a prominent position as a surrogate in the 2012 re-election campaign of President Barack Obama. Booker rose to prominence in his current role of mayor of Newark. He has been credited for trying to turn around the troubled city.

I’m sure, however, Booker could not have picked a WORSE time to head to the U.S. Senate. The approval ratings of Congress are at all-time lows. The body is regularly hammered for producing no real legislation, but only manufacturing avoidable crises. The government shutdown has definitely left a bad taste in the mouth of the American people.

I do feel that Booker’s can-do attitude will be a welcome change to the toxic environment of Congress. Maybe while crafting some new legislation, he will find snow to shovel and people to rescue from burning buildings — things he became known for in Newark. Lol…

Booker will be only one of two African-Americans currently serving in the Senate, joining Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) in that distinction. He also made history on Wednesday as the first black person ever elected to the Senate from New Jersey.

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