By David Madden

NEWARK, N.J. (CBS) — Newark, NJ mayor Cory Booker has taken himself out of consideration for next year’s New Jersey gubernatorial race.

Many pundits saw Booker as the most effective candidate to go up against incumbent Republican governor Chris Christie.

In an announcement released today online, Booker didn’t address that, although he vowed to support next year’s ticket no matter who’s on top.

“I will complete my full second term as mayor of Newark, New Jersey,” Booker’s recording said. “And as for my political future, I will explore the possibility of running for the United States Senate in 2014.”

That’s when the term of fellow Democrat Frank Lautenberg will be up.

As for the governor’s race, Democrats now have one declared candidate: state senator Barbara Buono.  Two others are pondering a run: state senate president Steve Sweeney and assembly majority leader Lou Greenwald.

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