Home>Highlight>New Booker Iowa staffer helped Gopal upset Beck

State Sen. Vin Gopal, right, with his 2017 field director, Haley Hager

New Booker Iowa staffer helped Gopal upset Beck

Haley Hager was field director for Gopal, Houghtaling & Downey

By David Wildstein, February 04 2019 12:23 pm

Cory Booker’s new Iowa director of operations and special projects honed her grass-roots political skills in New Jersey, where she helped flip the 11th district State Senate seat from red to blue in 2017.

Haley Hager ran the field operation for Vin Gopal (D-Long Branch) two years ago, when he upset three-term Republican State Sen. Jennifer Beck (R-Red Bank) in the Monmouth County district.

“Senator Booker could not have made a better choice than in Haley to help lead his Iowa team,” Gopal said.  “As our LD11 Field Director in 2017, she organized one of the best field programs Monmouth County has ever seen.”

Hager began her career as a political operative on Wendy Davis’ 2015 campaign for governor of Texas.  She worked on races in California, Florida, Wisconsin and Iowa before coming to New Jersey in 2017 to work for Gopal, Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling (D-Neptune) and Assemblywoman Joann Downey (D-Freehold).

After that, she returned to Iowa to serve as state director for NextGen Iowa, helping to boost turnout among young voters.

Democrats had a voter registration edge in the 11th and Beck had won re-election to the Senate by 10,796 votes (60%-39%) in 2013.  Gopal ousted her four years later by 4,158 votes, 54%-46%.

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