US Senator Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey has decided against seeking re-election in 2014 to a sixth term of office.
This virtually clears the way for Newark Mayor and media favorite Cory Booker, who likely would have faced off against Lautenberg in a Democrat primary. It’s not an entirely a done deal, however. While Booker is considered the leading candidate, there are other lawmakers that may enter the primary field for the rare open seat.
According to the New Jersey Star-Ledger, Lautenberg, 89, had this to say about this decision to step down:
“I am not announcing the end of anything. I am announcing the beginning of a two-year mission to pass new gun safety laws, protect children from toxic chemicals and create more opportunities for working families in New Jersey. While I may not be seeking re-election, there is plenty of work to do before the end of this term and I’m going to keep fighting as hard as ever for the people of New Jersey in the U.S. Senate.”
The senator plans to make a formal announcement of his decision not to run again tomorrow in his hometown of Paterson, New Jersey.
The Daily Caller reports that Lautenberg, a millionaire businessman and the last World War 2 veteran currently in the US Senate, was annoyed by Booker’s hard-charging ambitions:
… though many thought [Lautenberg] might retire due to his age, he reportedly bristled at Booker planning a run before he had made any announcement about his future. There is likely to be a heated Democratic primary for the open seat.”
On the Republican side, FNC host Geraldo Rivera has indicated he is considering running.
With the Lautenberg retirement, do you think Cory Booker is having a happy Valentine’s Day?