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Tom Murse

Cory Booker Versus Chris Christie? It Could Happen.

By December 10, 2012

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Cory Booker pictureNewark Mayor Cory Booker says he'll decide within the next couple of weeks whether to challenge New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in 2013, a race that would draw national attention. Booker, one of the Democratic Party's rising stars, called the Republican incumbent "vulnerable."

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"I am absolutely considering running for governor, as well as giving other options some consideration," Booker said on the CBS news magazine "Face the Nation." "I am going to be focused on that for the next week to 10 days or so and really come up with a decision that answers my basic question ... where do I believe I can make the best difference for the city I love, for the state I love and the nation I pledge my life to."

Booker, who is serving his second term as mayor of Newark, has said previously that he is also considering a run for U.S. Senate.

Christie enjoys broad support in the Garden State and would be a formidable opponent. The Washington Post has called him "the most popular Republican in the country." And a new poll shows Christie would even win an election challenge from New Jersey's own Bruce Springsteen.

Still, Booker said Christ's conservative views put him at odds with many of the state's moderate and liberal voters.

"We think to any Democrat Christie is vulnerable, as it should be, because there's a lot of issues in the state he's not falling in line with, from women's issues, environmental issues, from really going in a balanced way," Booker said on CNN.

Christie appeared to brush off Booker's comments. "If I'm vulnerable at 77 percent, so be it. I'm fine. Cory will make his decision when he makes his decision," he said. "I have a job to do. I don't have the luxury of playing politics right now."

A Booker-Christie matchup could be the race to watch not only in New Jersey but the United States in the 2013 elections because both men are widely believed to have their eyes set on a higher office, perhaps the White House in 2016.

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