The Washington Times - August 14, 2013, 08:55AM

Democrats are cheering Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s victory Tuesday night in a party primary that all but assures he will finish out the term of late Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey. 

In fact, they’re looking past his contest in October against Republican nominee Steve Lonegan.

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“I look forward to working side by side with Cory, and supporting his reelection next November,” said Sen. Michael Bennet, Colorado Democrat and chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Mr. Bennet said Mr. Booker, a rising star in the Democratic Party, will bring a type of “passion and energy” that’s needed in the Senate.

For his part Mr. Lonegan, the former mayor of Bogota, N.J., accused Mr. Booker of being anointed by the “Hollywood elite.”

Mr. Bennet said Mr. Lonegan shouldn’t be much of problem.

“Republicans have chosen to nominate an extreme, Tea Party candidate and I am confident New Jersey will resoundingly elect Cory Booker to the U.S. Senate in October and again next November,” he said.