Hours after Chris Christie set the special election clock in motion, New Jersey Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) started making a round of calls telling people [he] plans to run for the Senate, sources confirmed to POLITICO.
Pallone, who had acted as next-in-line for Lautenberg’s seat for years, had been on the fence about whether to challenge Newark mayor Cory Booker in a primary in 2014 for the seat.
Booker is a strong fundraiser and is the odds-on favorite. But the special election this year allows Pallone to keep his congressional seat if he loses, making this something of a free shot for him.
The coverage seems to suggest Booker is running. So Booker’s big pledge from last December is now moot, huh? “Let there be no doubt, I will complete my full second term as mayor. As for my political future, I will explore the possibility of running for the United States Senate in 2014.”
Notice the lack of conditions or wiggle room in that statement.
But I guess he meant, “unless our 89-year-old senator dies in office or something.”