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Newly elected U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Newly elected U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Democrat Cory Booker, the outgoing mayor of Newark, has handily defeated teabagging Republican Steve Lonegan and claimed the seat in the United States Senate once held by the late Democrat Frank Lautenberg. The Associated Press called the election for Booker, who holds a 56-43 lead over his GOP rival with over half of the state's precincts reporting. Turnout, as would be expected in a midweek special election, was dismal, with most fully reporting counties reporting roughly a third of their 2012 presidential turnout.

With Booker's election, the Democrats return to the 55-45 majority that they held in the Senate immediately after the 2012 elections. Booker takes the seat occupied for years by veteran Democrat Frank Lautenberg, who passed away earlier this year.

Cory Booker becomes, as Greg Giroux noted, just the fourth African-American senator elected via popular vote in the history of the United States. Congratulations are in order for him and his campaign team.

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