Booker touts Newark accomplishments in first campaign ad

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“I’ve spent my career not running from challenges, but toward them,” he says in the straight-to-camera spot.

Booker says, in Newark, that "we got guns off the street. Attracted new businesses. Created new jobs. And improved our public schools."

“Washington ducks our problems,” he says at the end. “I won’t.”

The spot will run statewide on cable outlets and is the first television ad in the Democratic primary, which pits Booker against Reps. Rush Holt, Frank Pallone and Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver.

Booker is heavily favored to win and has led his opponents in every poll of the race by substantial double-digit margins, taking more than 50 percent support among Democrats in some surveys.

But critics have questioned his record as mayor of Newark, suggesting he's spent more time traveling the country meeting potential investors and celebrities than he has tending to city business back at home.

Booker seems aware of the criticism, and the new ad is looking in part to frame public perception of his record before his opponents have the opportunity to do so.


The four Democrats will face off in the Aug. 13 primary, and whomever takes the nomination is favored to win the seat vacated by the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.).

Watch the ad: