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Booker's campaign path bumpier than anticipated

By By KATIE ZEZIMA and STEVE PEOPLES

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Cory Booker's path to Wednesday's U.S. Senate election in New Jersey has been a little bumpier than anticipated.

Even Republicans had expected Booker to cruise to victory by a wide margin over little-known Republican Steve Lonegan. After all, Booker is a Democrat with a growing national profile in a Democratic-leaning state.

But the charismatic Newark mayor has faced sustained Republican criticism in a race that has exposed vulnerabilities that could hamper him should he seek even higher office someday.

Booker and Lonegan are running a special election to replace former Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who died in June.

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