Independence USA, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s super-political action committee, is putting $1 million into New Jersey’s tighter–than-expected U.S. Senate race to support Democrat Cory Booker.
The group has taken out a 30-second television spot in the New York and Philadelphia media markets pitching Booker as a mayor who’s worked with both parties and business leaders to “get things done.” Among the accomplishments touted in the ad are $1 billion in development in Newark, Booker’s efforts to fix schools and his work get illegal guns off the streets.
“In a divided Washington, a senator to get things done,” the ad says. Later, it touts him as “A leader to put progress ahead of partisanship.”
It’s scheduled to run through the Oct. 16 special election between Booker and Republican Steven Lonegan for the seat held by Democrat Frank Lautenberg until his death June 3 at age 89. A poll by Monmouth University released Oct. 1 showed Booker with a 13-percentage point edge and Patrick Murray, director of the poll, said the race is closer than most pundits thought it would be.”
The mayor is founder and majority owner of Bloomberg News parent Bloomberg LP.
Independence USA is a political action committee that Bloomberg founded in the final weeks before the Nov. 6, 2012 presidential election. He’s the sole donor to the fund, which had spent about $11 million as of earlier this year. To date the group has advertised against candidates supported by the National Rifle Association and supported those who favor gun control such as Booker.
“Mayor Bloomberg has worked with Mayor Booker for a long time and has seen how he’s not someone who views things strictly through a partisan lens,” said Stu Loeser, a spokesman for Bloomberg. “He saw that in Mayor Booker’s work with Governor Christie to improve Newark public schools and with the bipartisan Mayors Against Illegal Guns to take on the gun lobby. Mayor Booker is willing to try innovative new solutions — and he doesn’t worry about party lines or the party’s traditional special interests. And Mayor Bloomberg thinks we need a lot more of that in Washington.”