Cory Booker’s Decision: Not Going After Chris Christie, Eyeing Lautenberg’s Seat [Video]

Cory Booker addressed speculation he will challenge New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie for his gubernatorial seat imminently in a new video titled “Finishing The Work,” an apparent rebuttal not only to the critical profile run earlier this week in the New York Times of the Newark mayor but a general answer to those who speculate on the popular politician’s ultimate political ambitions.

Booker responded yesterday to the takedown in the Times, assailing the factual correctness of the piece and expressing disappointment to see it on the paper of record’s front page.

In a video released Thursday, Booker admits not being Newark-born, but addresses his intent in governance for the troubled burg in months to come, and indicates he is mulling over a future Senate run.

Promising to finish out his term before seeking higher office, Cory Booker begins:

“I love Newark. I did not come to this city through the providence of birth. I chose Newark, and Newark, thank God, accepted me, embraced me and allowed me the greatest privilege of my life — to serve as mayor.”

The Washington Post notes that Booker would, in his stated consideration to run for Senate, potentially replace Sen. Frank Lautenberg, 89. The paper says:

“Booker’s decision means Lautenberg’s future will be under increased scrutiny. The longtime Democratic senator is up for reelection in 2014, but may opt for retirement. Lautenberg will turn 89 in January; he is the oldest member of the Senate. Booker said he intends to consult with Lautenberg as he makes his decision.”

Booker tweeted today:

The paper also notes that Cory Booker’s decision is a boon to Christie, who while beloved particular after his actions during Hurricane Sandy, would likely be displeased to face off against the also-popular Newark mayor in the next election.