By Yaël Ossowski | Special to Watchdog.org
It was a busy day Monday for the slick big-city mayor aiming for one of New Jersey‘s seats in the U.S. Senate.
Newark Mayor Cory Booker ended his evening in glitz and glamour, surrounded by the likes of Jennifer Garner, J.J. Abrams and former Walt Disney CEO Michael Eisner, joining forces in Hollywood to give their favorite Garden State Democrat a huge pull in campaign contributions, according to Hollywood Reporter.
The high-priced fundraiser fetched as much as $10,000 per ticket, giving donors the chance to schmooze alongside Hollywood’s elite in a fashion rivaling that of Barack Obama‘s epic and exclusive California campaign parties throughout the 2008 and 2012 presidential campaign.
It was hosted by none other than the film duo Ben Affleck and Matt Damon at the home of business magnate and Pittsburgh Penguins co-owner Ron Burkle, adding some serious buck to the star power in attendance.
But as the festivities started up in Tinseltown, the books were being closed on the criminal trial of a New Jersey housing magnate that gave heavy mention to Booker.
The case surrounds Tate George, the former basketball star who turned to business and made millions renovating Newark-area public housing projects.
George, being tried for fraud, allegedly gave a bogus presentation to Booker’s city administration in 2008, which awarded him a large development project that ended up going bust, among other proposed housing renovations.
Further evaluations by the city council and prosecutors allege George to be heavily indebted to investors and at the head of a ponzi scheme, reports the Trentonian.
Booker had previously praised George’s efforts to redo Newark’s development areas in a reality show program, according to the YouTube video.
Booker’s press team did not return a comment to Watchdog.org.
The latest poll conducted by Quinnipiac University shows Booker ahead 53-41 to his Republican opponent Steve Lonegan, a conservative activist. It was conducted Sept. 19-22 with 922 likely New Jersey voters and has a margin of error of 3.2 percent. That’s tighter than the previous survey, which gave Booker a 25 point advantage.
The special election for to fill the seat of the late U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg is Oct. 16.
Contact Yaël Ossowski at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him @YaelOss.
This article originally appeared on Watchdog.org