New Jersey’s Cory Booker was sworn into the U.S. Senate on Thursday. Booker is a Democrat and is the first black Senator from New Jersey to be sworn into the U.S. Senate. He’s also the first black senator to be elected since Barack Obama won his Illinois seat in 2004.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada said, “we’re going to find that Cory Booker is going to be a great asset to this nation and the Senate. We’re very fortunate to have this good man in the Senate. He’ll serve his state and our nation with distinction.”
Once Booker was sworn in as a Senator, he cast his first vote allowing Mel Watt to be head of Federal Housing Finance Agency. Booker was joining Vice President Biden for the ceremonial swear-in and met with President Obama in the White House Oval Office.
Booker and his mother, Carolyn, took a picture earlier in the day with Reid when they were surrounded by the news media. Booker was joined at the U.S. Capitol by his family and friends. Booker’s father died earlier this month after a long fight with Parkinson’s disease.
Booker resigned as mayor of Newark at midnight Wednesday after serving for seven years. His role in the Senate is unknown at this time. Booker will be replacing Republican Sen. Jeff Chiesa, who was appointed to the seat following the June 3 death of Democratic Sen. Frank Lautenberg. Booker defeated Republican Steve Lonegan on October 16.
Booker will serve the remainder of Lautenberg’s term until the end of 2014. He is making plans on running for re-election.