Cory Booker is quite popular in Hollywood. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported his week that guests at a recent Los Angeles fundraiser for the Newark Mayor included Steven Spielberg and Bruce Willis. He previously has received contributions from directors Ron Howard and Rob Reiner. But Booker's big-name supporters don't only come from the movie-making business: He's also a hit with athletes.
Booker, who played tight end for Stanford's football team, has received the financial backing of a number of fellow jocks as he explores a 2014 Senate run. New York Knicks point guard Jason Kidd, a former superstar with the since-relocated New Jersey Nets, contributed $5,000, according to Booker's first-quarter filing with the Federal Election Commission. New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz, who grew up in the Garden State, gave Booker $2,500. And David Shaw, a former Stanford wide receiver who is now the head coach for their shared alma mater, donated $1,000 to Booker's campaign.
Some lesser-known athletes have also pitched in to boost Booker. An invitation to a Booker fundraiser held in Chicago last month lists two hosts whose names may be familiar to college basketball junkies: Evan Eschmeyer and Javon Coney. Eschmeyer was an all-American center for Northwestern in the late '90s. He went on to play four seasons in the NBA, including two with the Nets. Coney, whose father was a major fundraiser for President Obama, played guard at Colorado and has faced off against the president in a pick-up game.
When Booker files with the FEC again in July, we'll eagerly comb through his report to see what other athletes have jumped on the bandwagon.