Contact Us
Make My Homepage

Is Cory Booker a Sure Thing for U.S. Senate? [POLL/AUDIO]

As most predicted Democrat Cory Booker and Republican Steve Lonegan cruised to victory in yesterday’s U.S. Senate primary.

Newark Mayor Cory Booker
Newark Mayor Cory Booker (John Moore/Getty Images)

This Oct. 16, the two will face off to fill the remaining 15 months of the late U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg’s term. If conventional wisdom proves correct, Booker is likely to be the one New Jersey voters send to Washington.

“There’s no question that this is Cory Booker’s race to lose,” says Monmouth University poll director Patrick Murray. “His name recognition, his high favorable rating all combine to say that New Jersey is ready to send another Democrat to the Senate.”

If Booker does win, it would be history making. New Jersey would have two minorities as U.S. Senators, the only state to do that. The Garden State’s other current U.S. Senator is Bob Menendez.

“It really boils down to Cory Booker has appeal to a vast swath of New Jersey voters from cities to suburbs,” explains Murray. “It’s going to be hard to overcome that.”

There are roughly 700,000 more registered Democrats in New Jersey than there are Republicans. That means the conservative Lonegan has a built-in disadvantage, but it goes deeper than that.

“This race would’ve been tough for any Republican to win even if it wasn’t against someone with such high name recognition like Cory Booker, but another Republican may have had a better chance of making this a closer race” says Murray.

“The issue here is that New Jersey voters are more concerned with social issues when they vote for U.S. Senator than they are for Governor and Steve Lonegan has already staked out positions on social issues that are out of step with most New Jersey voters.”

He could be out of step with Independent voters too and they tend to swing elections. Murray says Lonegan could turn off a lot of voters with his positions on abortion, gay marriage and gun control. The GOP candidate opposes all three.

“He (Lonegan) also says he’s going to make this race a referendum on (President Barack) Obama,” points out Murray. “Well, if it’s a referendum on Obama, Obama won this state by 20 points just a few months ago so the referendum we would think would be pro-Obama. If Steve Lonegan wants to make this campaign an Obama referendum he’s going to lose this race.”


Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of NJ101.5

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for New Jersey Insiders quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive New Jersey Insiders contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.