Joseph Marbach, political science professor and acting dean of the College of Arts And Sciences at Seton Hall University, said he’s not surprised that Booker is struggling to gain traction on the local level despite his popularity nationally.
During the primary season that ended Tuesday, Booker went on the stump numerous times for Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, and is often invited as a keynote speaker at high-profile events. Yesterday, he addressed the graduating class at Harvard Law School.
“He’s relied on personal magnetism and popularity rather than a cohesive political organization based on patronage and favoritism that have long been a part of Newark’s history,” Marbach said. “Until the overall culture changes, it’s going to handicap him. He’s not going to be as successful unless he can broaden his appeal.”