Booker nabs Codey endorsement; Pallone launches second ad in New Jersey Senate race

Meanwhile, a third Democrat in the primary, Rep. Rush Holt, is holding a town hall event with a number of progressive policy heavy-hitters, including Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald and former Energy Secretary Steven Chu.

In his endorsement, Codey calls Booker "the right person at the right time."

"For more than a decade, Cory Booker has worked tirelessly to bring people together and find solutions to the challenges facing Newark families. That's exactly the kind of leadership that our state needs in Washington right now," he adds.

Codey's endorsement gives Booker nearly all the big-name New Jersey Democratic power-brokers, though Pallone managed to snag at least one big name of his own: Frank Lautenberg's, whose family endorsed his bid for the deceased senator's seat.

Lautenberg's widow has also appeared on the campaign trail with Pallone, touting his work for New Jersey in the House.

Pallone supporters have worked to frame him as the hard-working average guy in the race, against celebrity Booker. Pallone's new ad repeats the campaign line that he's a "typical Jersey story," and touts his work on the healthcare reform law and his defense of Social Security.

"I approve this message because New Jersey needs a guy that drives a Chevy. Let the other guys take the limo," he says at the end of the ad, leaning atop his Chevy.

Booker's close friendships with various celebrities — Oprah is hosting a fundraiser for him this week — have opened him up to criticism from his Democratic opponents.

All three of them, including Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver, hammered Booker at a debate this past weekend, at which he did not appear.

Booker will engage in his first debate with his opponents next week, on Aug. 5, just a week from Election Day.

But he's held onto a significant lead in every poll, and he's the heavy favorite for the Aug. 13 primary. Democrats are expected to retain the seat in the general election.