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Cory Booker Won’t Challenge Chris Christie for NJ Guv, Will Seek Senate

Newark Mayor Cory Booker has decided not to run for New Jersey governor against incumbent Chris Christie, whose popularity is soaring. Instead, Booker is setting his sights on a Senate seat.

Chris Booker

Booker called on Democratic party leaders this morning to tell them he will not challenge Gov. Christie in next year’s gubernatorial race, but will run for U.S. Senate in 2014 reports NJ.com:

Sources familiar with Booker’s plans told The Star-Ledger that the mayor was preparing to call the likes of George Norcross, Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo and state Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D-Gloucester) to inform them of his decision. Sources also said the mayor had made his decision within the past week after months of deliberation. His sources requested anonymity in advance of an official announcement by the mayor but described a process in which the mayor would call ‘about ten’ party heavyweights.

According to the Washington Post, the decision will apply new pressure on Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D) to announce whether he’ll run for reelection and spares Gov. Chris Christie (R) a 2013 match-up against top potential challenger.

Booker’s decision reshapes the field of Democrats, who will now take a shot at the popular Republican governor. Since the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the polls are favoring Christie versus Booker.

Christie led Booker 50 percent to 36 percent among New Jersey voters, a Public Policy Polling survey released earlier this month showed. Other Democrats weighing a bid for governor trail Christie by more than 20 points each.

According to a Quinnipiac University poll released today, New Jersey voters prefer Christie instead of Booker: voters say 67-25 percent that Gov. Chris Christie deserves re-election in 2013, while giving him a lead by 18 points or more against any Democratic challenger.

Some folks support Booker while others are for Gov. Christie.

Here’s some happily pissed Twitter reactions:

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