Gay Groups Hoping For Cory Booker Versus Chris Christie In 2013


With the New Jersey gubernatorial race around the corner, the state’s LGBT activists are both publicly and privately encouraging Democratic Newark mayor Cory Booker to run against GOP incumbent Chris Christie.

“Do I think Cory Booker is the only Democrat who can beat Gov. Christie? No,” Garden State Equality executive director Steven Goldstein said of the popular, heroic and gay friendly mayor. “Do I believe that he has a much better shot than anyone else? Absolutely.”

And Fred Sainz from Human Rights Campaign agrees that Booker is in a unique position, both for his national visibility and the LGBT community’s devotion. “Like few others, Cory Booker manages to capture the imagination of the
LGBT community from all over the country, and from all walks of life,” he said. “I would suspect a wide
diversity of Americans would support his campaign and help get him the
resources he needs to win.” And then there’s the obvious difference in LGBT politics: Booker endorses marriage equality, while Christie vetoed an equality law for political gain.

No official word on whether Booker will run, but two sources told the Star-Ledger that Booker will decide before Christmas. If he does, the NJ governor’s race, with two such boisterous, charismatic figures, could easily become the main attraction in an otherwise sleepy off-year election season.


  1. candide001 says

    Christie’s high approval ratings because of his strong performance during Sandy will make him hard to beat this time. That’s too bad for equality.

  2. Moz's says

    Booker has already announced he wont run for Gov but rather for NJ Fed senate seat

    Done, so they are wasting their time

  3. Caliban says

    I would love to see Booker in a higher office. He has spoken very eloquently for the rights of gay people, ALL people.

  4. strange bedfellows all around says

    Booker is obviously a politician on the move. So he’ll do something. Maybe better in the Senate.

    Here’s a possibility: Maybe Christie will change party affiliation. Since Republicans aren’t too fond of him any more. He was seen hugging Obama. And he put the people he serves ahead of the party, that’s a big Republican no no.

  5. Pete says

    Mayor Booker is a wonderful advocate and spokesperson for LGBT Equality & Civil Rights….That being said Gov Christie has a super high approval rating…Post Sandy that approval rating is sky high. Cory Booker while very popular will not mount a super expensive campaign to NOT WIN the election…..Christie will easily win another term…I would love to see Booker focus his energy on a Senate run or one of the second term Obama appointments. Never a dull day in politics

  6. JohnAGJ says

    It doesn’t affect me one way or the other since I don’t live in New Jersey, but hasn’t their been reports unfavorable to Booker during his terms as mayor of Newark? If he is a mediocre mayor and controversial, which I have no idea the truth about, why should gay groups embrace the man? Just because he supports SSM? Seems like there should be more than that to gain our support.

  7. Brian in Texas says


    I don’t know where you’re getting your info from, but Booker has done a great job as mayor. He’s really hands on with his constituents and has forged several public-private partnerships to revitalize the blight that was Downtown Newark. He’s also a national figure in the Democratic Party.

    If Booker wants to be Governor of New Jersey he should wait until Christie is term limited or runs for President or Vice President.

    Either way he has a very bright future.

  8. JohnAGJ says

    @Brian in Texas: I only know what I’ve seen on the news, such as the near-riot over some vote he participated in at the city council recently. Since I don’t live in NJ I don’t catch much about Booker. He seems a likeable enough fellow and is friends with Christie it appears. This is one for the NJ folks to decide since it’s their state, I’m just leery about jumping into bed with another politician because he whispers sweet nothings into our ears only to get burned later so hold them all as being suspect until shown otherwise.

  9. Caliban says

    @JohnAGJ, Booker is a personal friend of Rachel Maddow’s. They were Rhode’s Scholars at the same time. I really don’t think his LGBT advocacy is fake. He seems to be passionate about it and speaks about it frequently.

    That said, I don’t live in New Jersey so can’t rate him as a mayor. But from what I’ve read he gets high marks. After running into a burning building to rescue someone, he has attained an almost heroic reputation.

    He’s also been criticized for taking money from Wall Street. Politicians HAVE to get their campaign funds from somewhere and that’s where Booker got his. If that’s a deal-breaker for you, fine. I get that. But by and large I like him.

  10. Stefan says

    This is why Christie should be working behind the scenes to ensure that the veto is overriden on the same-sex marriage bill. As far as his post-Sandy approval ratings, remember that Scott Brown had approval rating above 60%, yet he still lost reelection.

  11. robert says

    Cory Booker is awesome, and his belief in the strength of diversity doesn’t just stop with marriage equality, it’s for real. He’s all about breaking down old barriers. Personally, I would like to see him run for U.S. Congress, but we’ll just have to wait to see how this plays out.

  12. Ken says

    Christie will win a second term easily. We need to seriously look at putting marriage equality on the ballot if we want to see it in New Jersey anytime before 2018.

  13. Justin in NJ says

    I think Gov. Christie in some ways wants marriage equality, he wanted to put it on the ballot for the voters of NJ to decided, even though at the time recent polling showed that the voters of NJ disagreed with his party’s view and it would pass (52 percent for gay marriage, 42 against it). He even called upon every Republican in the state legislature to vote to put it on the ballot, but the Democrats would not support it. Why not put it on the ballot?

  14. ratbastard says

    Some of posters are funny, like little kids. Both men are POLITICIANS. Both have good and bad. Both operate in a political arena [NJ and the US] where you can’t get anything done minus compromise, and compromise means the middle way, not the far left or far right, regardless of how many lefties and righties wish otherwise.

    IMO being a US senator is the ultimate political position in the US minus POTUS. It’s very honorable, powerful and like the Pope or Queen you can stay there until you kick the bucket if you serve you constituents [especially business interests] well and you’re a good enough bullsh*ter.

    Booker has a better chance within his own Democratic party as far as winning primaries. Christie p*ssed off many uber conservatives in his party by complimenting President Obama, but those were mostly outside his state, so he could probably comfortably run for senate on the Republican ticket if the opportunity arose. A race with Christie vs Booker would be interesting. I’d say Christie has the advantage because he is a know entity among power brokers in NJ and and is liked by his state’s business and special interest groups. Booker has only been mayor. He be better advised to run for congress then senate.

  15. niles says

    Booker still has a lot of residual damage and “concern” among many Democratic strategists due to his loose cannon antics early in the presidential campaign. As for Christie, he appears unbeatable, unless he decides to take two years off to prepare for his presidential run. In addition, Democrats in NJ do not want a popular vote on gay marriage because it sets a bad precedent on legislation and will cost a ton of money- not to mention the animus that a brutal campaign will stir up in that state.

  16. says

    @JUSTININNJ: The question should be, Why put it on the ballot? The NJ legislature, who answers to NJ voters, already did the right thing and voted for marriage equality. Only Gov. Christie stood in the way of equality by vetoing it. His personal opinion on marriage doesn’t matter, his actions do, and his actions say that our rights should depend on the whims of a majority and should be subject to an expensive, divisive popularity contest.

    Cory Booker should have a bright future whatever direction he decides to take it, and he’s certainly our ally, whereas Christie certainly is not, except by the lowest standards of the anti-gay Republican Party.

  17. Francis says

    The way we’ll see equality in New Jersey is if there is enough votes to override a Christie veto. It was pretty close in 2009, but what happened was several Democrats and Moderate Republicans turned their backs on us or simply were too scared/weak to support equality. Now, we’re about to enter 2013. Times are different now. Hopefully there are enough votes to override a Christie veto in the upcoming legislative session if marriage equality becomes a hot button issue in Jersey again.

  18. says

    So the only reason any person would want to be against gay marriage is for political gain? Forget the fact that it’s a sin and against the Holy Bible?

    It’s not saying Christians hate gay people. But we don’t have to do anything to endorse sin.

    We need God in America again!

  19. JohnAGJ says

    And yet, Tothian, I’m willing to bet that you voted for a flat-out heretic, from a traditionally Christian perspective, earlier this month. Surely you are aware of what the Bible says about supporting such men who teach such gross errors and lead folks away from the true God of the Bible. Right?

  20. JohnAGJ says

    @Caliban: I hope you’re right, but I prefer to remain skeptical of all politicians until they prove themselves. Even then they deserve to be under close scrutiny.

  21. jaragon says

    I would love to see gay rights triumph in NJ but it’s going to be very difficult for any one to beat Governor Christie.

  22. andrew says

    Chris Christie won the governorship once in one of America’s bluest states. His performance in the aftermath of Sandy have almost guaranteed him a second term. Also, unlike most conservative Republicans he has a personality that connects with average folks.

  23. says

    It’s a damn shame that politics has become nothing more than a popularity contest. It’s gets even sadder when you realize most of the people running for office make empty promises to win over people they never plan to help. We need real leaders back in Washington who plan to help the people, not leave everyone behind that isn’t a crony!

  24. Icebloo says

    Christie can be beaten. All the Democrats need to do is link him to the Republican Party and their extremist agenda. The whole nation has woken up so all we need to do is remind them that Christie supports it.