NJ Politics Digest: Reactions to Booker’s Presidential Bid

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Sen. Cory Booker. Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images

When U.S. Senator Cory Booker announced on Friday that he is running for president, several people made it a point to say they weren’t surprised. It’s long been thought New Jersey’s junior senator would someday seek the nation’s highest office, and with Republican President Donald Trump up for re-election in 2020, it’s time for the former Newark mayor to make his move.

With Booker’s announcement began the speculation as to whether his candidacy and his aspirational, lift-everyone-up approach to politics will find traction amid a crowded Democratic field of hopefuls.

The New York Times looked at where Booker stands on important issues, from his support for Medicare for All to his liberal positions on social issues, while the Star-Ledger looked to Booker’s past to see what the future might bring. The Inquirer broke down both Booker’s path to victory and the liabilities he’ll have to deal with, as did Nate Silver’s 538.

Booker’s seat in the senate is also up for election in 2020, and The New Jersey Globe website points out that Booker hasn’t yet said if he’ll campaign for both offices during the election. State Democrats have cleared the way for Booker to mount both races, with legislation specifically allowing for such an effort. Booker said he was “grateful New Jerseyans pulled together to make sure that that possibility is there, but [his] focus is running for president of the United States.”

Quote of the Day: “When their assumptions are examined closely, their claims of financial hardship fall away,’’ — Rate Counsel Stefanie Brand, on PSEG Nuclear and Exelon Generation’s claims they need $300 million in annual ratepayer subsidies to keep their three nuclear power plants open.

Cory Booker on the Issues: Where He Stands
In his six years in the Senate, Cory Booker has progressed from a moderate who defended private equity to a leading progressive voice on issues like criminal justice reform and marijuana legalization. As he transitions to a national presidential campaign, which he announced Friday, the candidate has been focusing on some key issues that animate the left wing of the Democratic Party.
New York Times Read more

How Cory Booker Could Win The 2020 Democratic Nomination
A charismatic, liberal-but-not-super-liberal black man is running for president. He has degrees from two of America’s most prestigious universities. He was a community organizer before serving in elected office. He served a stint in local government before becoming one of the very few African-Americans ever elected to the U.S. Senate. And he is running on a message of optimism.
538 Read more

We Knew Cory Booker Before He Was Running for President. Here’s What His Hometown Has to Say.
Alumni of Northern Valley Regional High School at Old Tappan’s Class of 1987 were assembling for their 10-year reunion at a banquet hall in Norwood.
NJ.com Read more

Prosecutor Admits She Got Four Emails About Katie Brennan Rape Case, but Says She Did Not Read ‘Substance of Them’
Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez received four “routine” emails laying out accusations of sexual assault involving members of Gov. Phil Murphy’s election campaign, but “did not read the substance of them,” according to the Attorney General’s office.
NJ.com Read more

Murphy Close to Signing New Tax—On Rain!
Every time it rains, it could be raining pennies from property owners if Gov. Phil Murphy signs legislation that could end up taxing stormwater runoff.
NJ101.5 Read more

Rate Counsel Says PSEG-Exelon Failed To Show Need for $300M Nuclear Subsidies
The state should deny $300 million in ratepayer subsidies to PSEG Nuclear and Exelon Generation as the two companies failed to prove their three nuclear power plants in South Jersey will close without the incentives, according to a filing by the New Jersey Rate Counsel.
NJSpotlight Read more

Driving While High: Legal Weed Could Jam Courts With DUI Cases, Ensnare the Innocent, NJ Lawyer Warns
As New Jersey moves to legalize weed, the state may face a new challenge: how to handle driving while stoned.
Inquirer Read more

Meth Skyrockets in NJ: DEA
Over a two-year period, federal drug agents have seen a more than 58-fold increase in the amount of methamphetamine in New Jersey, officials announced Friday.
Asbury Park Press Read more

Controversial Lawmaker Plans to Leave Assembly, Run for Morris County Job
State Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll has long been known in New Jersey political circles as one of the most socially conservative and outspoken members of the Legislature.
NJSpotlight Read more

NJ’s Paid Family Leave Program Is About to Pay Out Much More
New Jersey’s paid family leave program may soon soon be expanded big-time, which means you would get paid for taking time off from your job while caring for a newborn or ill family member.
NJ.com Read more

Solar Power Made More Expensive by NJ Rules
Environmental and consumer advocates say New Jersey’s solar energy price rules, designed to spur solar construction, have long hindered the industry’s growth as consumers are being compelled to buy sun-generated electricity at inflated prices.
Asbury Park Press Read more

New Jersey Becomes Second State in Nation to Require That Schools Teach LGBT History
New Jersey has become the second state in the nation after California to adopt a law that requires schools to teach about LGBT history in a move hailed by civil rights groups as a step toward inclusion and fairness.
The Record Read more

Officials Scramble to Help 500 Workers Find Jobs After Marcal Fire
An estimated 500 jobs are in limbo after a raging fire destroyed nearly 90 percent of the Marcal Paper factory in Elmwood Park, and it will be a blow to the region’s economy if the company does not recover.
The Record Read more

NJ Transit to Continue Honoring Discounted Tickets
Full fares are back in effect as the 10 percent discount for the final stretch of emergency braking positive train control installation ends.
NJ101.5 Read more

Whistleblower Lawsuit: NJ Nurse Reports Government Corruption, Is Fired
A state nurse tried to raise the alarm about her supervisor’s misconduct, but her warnings “fell on deaf ears” and she eventually was fired, she claims in a lawsuit.
Asbury Park Press Read more

Phil Murphy Joins Call for Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam to Resign
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam should resign after his yearbook page shows a man dressed in blackface and another person wearing a Ku Klux Klan robe and hood, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said on Friday night.
The Record Read more

Gun Safety Officer Accidentally Shoots Himself in Leg at Randolph Gun Facility
The man who accidentally shot himself in the leg during a qualification course at RTSP gun range in Randolph last month was a gun safety officer, records revealed.
Daily Record Read more NJ Politics Digest: Reactions to Booker’s Presidential Bid