Cory Booker ’91 M.A. ’92, the junior U.S. Senator for New Jersey, won re-election today over his opponent, Republican Jeff Bell. Polls closed at 8 p.m., and as of press time, 55.90 percent of reporting voters said they voted for Booker, versus 42.23 percent for Bell.
Booker, at the time the mayor of Newark, became a senator for New Jersey last October after a special election was called to fill the seat of the deceased Frank Lautenberg. Booker was the first African-American senator to represent the state of New Jersey.
In his first year serving in the Senate, Booker co-sponsored and voted for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and the Respect for Marriage Act, which would prohibit discrimination in employment on the basis of sexual orientation and repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, respectively. He also supported a bill that would toughen sanctions against Iran and one that pursued a bipartisan budget compromise.
A major focus of Booker’s 2014 campaign was bipartisanship. This summer, he introduced a criminal justice bill nicknamed the REDEEM Act alongside Rand Paul, and he has publicly stated that he intends to meet with each of his Republican senator colleagues. Bell, a former speechwriter for Ronald Reagan, campaigned largely on a platform of returning the nation to the gold standard.
Booker was Stanford’s 2012 commencement speaker.