Midway to 2010

Newark’s Mayor Cory Booker at Midpoint
Balanced look at Mayor Booker’s achievements in the two years since he was sworn into office. The editorial points out the major challenges and difficulties facing the city and City Hall’s response.

Expectations were high when he came to office, not only because he was an attractive personality but also because his predecessor seemed incurably corrupt. His success depends partly on meeting these expectations. Judging by a recent interview in his spacious City Hall office, in which he exuded a sense of confident serenity, he thinks he can do so. But he says the job has turned out to be every bit as hard as he expected.

Mr. Booker reached the midpoint of his first four-year term today – too soon to achieve the ambitious goals he set for himself, but not too soon for his constituents to grumble about his mistakes.

The piece highlights the possibility of Booker joining the Obama administration, should he get utterly discouraged in Newark. Sure, I think that’s the opportunity is certainly available to him, but it would surprise me if he left Newark before accomplishing his goals.

The 3am visits to the police stations, late night encounters with residents on the streets, advocating for Newark in every corner of the country, championing the city on NPR, in the Times, and wherever he can find a national audience — the man has staked his political reputation, and maybe a little more, on the city’s restoration.
If Booker walks away from Newark without improving the city, he would be known as the Guy Who Couldn’t Save Newark.

I just don’t think he could live with that.

Author: Ken Walker

Husband, Father, Analyst. In a glass case of emotion since 1978.

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