Transcript for Cory Booker Sworn-In As New Jersey's New Senator
This is a special. Hello I'm Taina Hernandez in new York -- this is an ABC news digital special report New Jersey. Has a -- senator today Cory Booker the now former mayor of Newark will be sworn in by vice president Joseph Biden just moments from now. And later today senator -- will meet with President Obama joining me now with more on the upper Chamber's newest member of -- senate. ABC's. Chief Washington correspondent Jeff -- hi Jeff. They -- -- so no honeymoon for Cory Booker what is the big vote he will likely face first. We'll certainly not much of a honeymoon and I mean senator Booker is coming into the senate joining -- senator at a really. At at time of high partisanship which is generally true but. He's facing his first votes this afternoon will be on nomination votes a couple of president Obama's nominees to the executive branch one as a judge on the DC Court of Appeals. The Republicans are already threatening to a filibuster. And another is to -- -- A key position and in a federal housing agency which Republicans are also threatening to filibuster so it's two confirmation votes. This afternoon of course he will side with Democrats Democrats quite frankly. Happy to have and it returns the balance of power to be a party 55 to 45 Democrats had been missing now one. Seat without the Democrat from New Jersey. So there happy to have him around but he does -- tough -- this afternoon. So happy that their numbers are back up but do -- Democrats and the senate in general. Welcome someone who's considered a rock star this man as one point four million Twitter followers is this something that is. Welcome in the senate in terms of a colleague or opposite. Well I think that it all depends on how he plays this a Cory Booker certainly is not the first rock star if you will to -- this chamber the senate. Has say -- history and sort of a reputation. Obtaining these rock stars. I'm it all depends on how you act and conduct yourself but Hillary Clinton when she arrived. In a 2000 and one she was you know. The -- diligent freshman senator she. Was always well prepared asked a lot of questions did few interviews I remember when a Barack Obama arrived in the senate in 2005. He. Believe it or not did not appear on a Sunday show that whole year his first year in office. He was trying to play the role -- -- freshman senator I'm Marco Rubio Ted Cruz on the Republican side had taken a bit of a different approach they're involved in. Seemingly almost everything -- -- Rand Paul so I think actually he'll become one of a lot of people who see themselves and see their futures. In somewhat to a brighter positions here you know of course he could run for president -- that. He certainly would not be alone in the only person in the senate running for president so -- silly shapes up to all these other sort of bigger egos and -- bigger people. So he gets to meet with the president tonight -- this unusual for a junior senator ushered in with a special election or is this. Par for the course you know the two have been friends since 2005 they have their ups and downs but is this. Regular treatment for an -- Sure it is I mean it's I'm usually be a president has. -- new freshman class over to the senate right after their sworn anyways so since he's the only one being sworn in today like he is going to give that meeting of course he is close to President Obama. But this is pretty much par for the course I remember being at the White House -- Young senator Barack Obama was invited when President Bush was in office so this happens every time it's just a little unusual that he's the only one going because he's being sworn in after a special elections -- All right well we -- -- Joseph Biden. On -- here's so we're gonna to -- effort just a minute Jeff and here's the vice president and Cory Booker our new senator from New Jersey. -- kimono her. Can you please raise your right hand and she -- him. Do you solemnly swear they -- support and defend the constitution United States against all enemies foreign and domestic that you will bear true faith and allegiance to the -- But you take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of -- -- And the -- well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office. Which are about to enter so help you god I do congratulations senator welcome -- That was it Cory Booker is sworn in as new Jersey's newest senator and actually Jeff. He's the only one there you mentioned this before he was ushered in with a special election when -- face reelection and why this election. So -- why did it come before November 5. Well this is -- Using the New Jersey election -- to -- stuff fullest extent really of course he is replacing. Senator frank Wattenberg longtime senator from New Jersey who died. And then governor Chris Christie sat -- special election -- Largely so it wouldn't coincide with his own. His own reelection which is -- next week. In New Jersey so -- brokers election was set a few weeks ago largely to keep those two. Several of course the argument from Governor Christie was that he wanted a New Jersey to have its a senator being -- represented there as soon as possible but what it did was that. It allowed senator -- to be. I'm elected and it will likely allow Governor Christie to be reelected next week without a strong Democrat on the ballot which would have gotten other Democrats out which could have threatened governor Christie's. Own reelection bid so they've worked. Both in agreement on this which is why he was elected in a special election. Let's talk about. Smokers history in New Jersey specifically -- he was mayor of Newark he came in with a lot of promises a lot of hype. What does his legacy and did he accomplish what he set out to. I think his legacy will largely be unfinished he did not. -- finish out his term as the mayor of new work obviously by. By running for senate but a look at Newark as -- a lot of challenges. Like most of big cities in America like most urban centers and of course those challenges were just compounded by. -- -- sandy just a year ago so. I don't think he definitely did not accomplish -- he set out to accomplish one thing he did accomplish was making a name for himself. And it -- criticized by many in New Jersey for spending as much time in New York City. As in New Jersey. And four really promoting himself so that's something that I'll be keeping an eye on here as as just to see how he conducts himself in the senate. Just to see if he becomes one of a group of a hundred or if he tries to -- more of a show boat out in front as he was really. The mayor of Newark but -- -- stars -- crime high poverty. And other things of course one mayor one mayoral term will not fix all those problems that have been building and developing for years. So let's take a look at the newly sworn in senator Booker with senate majority leader Harry Reid we have some video from earlier today and I -- some sound. Let's see how that played out. News -- over. -- -- -- I'm so proud -- full of problem with both the -- to a giants -- -- -- -- you know -- want. -- -- I should tell him. -- -- have a nice photo op with Cory Booker senate majority Harry Reid and Cory Booker mom Jeff what can you tell us about Cory Booker the man is his personal history. Sure I was standing there are no violated senator -- Requests have no questions but. I think that senator but her standing there at this mother's interesting it shows you know that he isn't going to be one of the a younger members of the city's 44 years old -- -- single. Not married a very close to his and his parents his father. Passed away quite recently within last month -- very close to his mother. But. His personal life has always been sort of intriguing -- he's -- I'm a man about town if you will when he was been. C -- mayor I had every big democratic -- political event democratic conventions and things. He always has a -- and on -- and a following so I certainly think Cory Booker is a man. His personal life will be also. Something that is so watched up here in Washington fairly closely. And he's known for is energy let's take a look at his election night victory party and his speech. There's no there's just frustrating error that didn't -- more politics. It's a zero sum game mentality of the combined. And -- With a big win lose or what we live today it's not -- okay. Too many people are for but why items. Are now. Compare -- to the -- that box. Cory Booker talking about the bipartisan spirit he hopes to bring to Washington. Will he do sell. -- he may bring that bipartisan spirit to Washington but. He certainly. Will be met with the realities the -- partisan realities of watched and every news senator. Sworn in her most new senators sworn in gives similar promises to try and bring a bipartisan spirit. But. The reality is things are fairly locked in Republicans are fighting to win -- controlled the senate next year. In 2014. -- he will be firmly on the side of Democrats firmly in the the liberal Democrat -- -- here but one thing I -- look for. What will senators did that surprise us he certainly is likely to find an alliance would some Republican. Member of the senate just someone to -- -- do business with a few well. Using one more -- analogy from senator Barack Obama when he was saved a freshman senator from Illinois. He reached out with the freshman senator from Oklahoma at the time Tom Coburn one of the most conservative members of the senate. And they did a lot of things together so -- interest in seeing who senator Booker will sort of reach out with and have an alliance with but. One thing he is coming into the senate at a really interesting time in terms of turnover. There -- been more than half of the senate now has turned over in the last four years unprecedented in the history of the senate. Normally a place where people stay for a long time and get -- and in some cases died there while this that the senate is filled with new faces. And Cory Booker is one of those are -- really a new generation. Changing of the guard in many ways in the senate. He even in face but he does command with some serious connections both talk a little bit about his president relationship with the president. They've had their ups and downs but they've been friends for along time the president actually endorsed him and and participated in online video for the selection. Sure he is -- President Obama. -- he did sort of anger envy the Obama campaign the reelection campaign -- remember in the 2012 cycle. When he was sort of critical for what the White House and the president was saying about Wall Street. So Cory Booker is very close to Wall Street so as we look ahead to his possible political future his connections in his. Close relationships with Wall Street and the donor class is very important not to be. Discounted at all but one other fact I remember about Cory Booker at the Democratic Convention in 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina. He did what a lot of for a prominent Democrats do he went and visited some state delegations -- he went to the New Hampshire breakfast where this the country's first primary is. He went to the Iowa breakfast where the -- country's first. A road to -- White House begins if you will and he told the story that he is a grandson a violent his grandmother in fact. It was from Iowa so that is an interest in part of his biography that will play into sort of a -- a political. Lore in reading of the tea leaves about Cory Booker he has national ambitions no question about that. And he also has the slight connection to Iowa his grandmother was born there that I think we'll hear more and more -- talking about in the years to come. Is he going to run in 2016. Of course not but look at him down the road. As -- A potential presidential nominee but as we said earlier he's now filled in a room where most every senator wakes up in the morning and sees. Presidential material in the -- And -- I'm sure they do. He's also making history -- that might surprise some people he's only. The second African American in the senate and the only when elected since. Well he is I mean he is the I'm -- he's joining senator Tim Scott Republican of South Carolina. As a -- second African American. In the senate and it really is in every. A ways a a -- -- -- -- spirit of diversity and an -- of diversity. In the senate as well. -- senator Marco Rubio of Florida he's first generation American his Cuban senator Ted -- same thing so they're really. Is they and he joins the chase. The changing face of the senate in every respect. Of course there have been other African Americans in the senate I -- five or six since reconstruction. But several of those were appointed so he becomes the second elected -- senator. African American senator in the senate at this moment joined by senator Tim Scott Republican of South Carolina. The only democratic African American elected threat Brack Obama big chicken to grilled on -- big -- to fill they're saying maybe have been looking to try on the issues after 2016. I think that's always a possibility he comes into the senate with big ambitions. We'll see how he does here. In the in the first year. All right we'll just -- thank you so much for joining us chief Washington correspondent for NBC news and you've been watching ABC news digital special report. Newly minted senator Cory Booker has been sworn in -- -- Hernandez.
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