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Cory Booker 2020 presidential campaign

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cory Booker 2020 presidential campaign
Cory Booker 2020 Logo.svg
Campaign2020 United States presidential election (Democratic Party primaries)
CandidateCory Booker
U.S. Senator from New Jersey (2013–present)
Mayor of Newark, New Jersey (2006–2013)
StatusFiled at the FEC
HeadquartersNewark, New Jersey[1]
Key peopleAddisu Demissie (campaign manager)[1]
Jenna Lowenstein (deputy campaign manager)[1]
Matt Klapper (senior advisor)[1]
Modia Butler[1]
Tamia Booker (national political director)[2]
Jeff Giertz (national communications director)[2]
Michael Tyler (deputy national communications director)[2]
SloganTogether, America, We Will Rise[3]

The 2020 presidential campaign of U.S. Senator Cory Booker was announced on February 1, 2019, when a video titled "We Will Rise" was posted on Booker's YouTube channel.[4] He intentionally chose the first day of Black History Month to announce his candidacy.[1]

Booker was widely expected to run for president.[5] His idealistic rhetoric and vocal defense for the rights of blacks, women, and LGBT people (groups who tend to belong to the Democratic Party's base) in hearings dating back to 2017 had been seen as positioning for a 2020 run.[6] Booker had been openly considering a presidential bid as early as September 2018, and told his supporters that he would make a decision during the winter holidays.[7]


Booker campaigns in New Hampshire on February 2019.[8]
Booker campaigns in New Hampshire on February 2019.[8]

In 2018, Politico identified Booker as part of the "Hell-No Caucus." Along with Senators Harris, Gillibrand, Warren and Sanders, he had voted overwhelmingly against Trump nominees for administration jobs. All five of the Senators in this group were considered potential 2020 presidential contenders.[9] He began making trips to early campaign locations in 2018 and early 2019.[7][10][11]

The Booker campaign does not accept contributions from corporate PACs or federally registered lobbyists. Donations from other political action committees, such as the Environment America organization, may still be accepted.[12]

Booker opened his campaign headquarters in the historic renovated New Jersey Bell Headquarters Building on Broad Street in Newark, New Jersey in March 2019.[13] He launched a two-week campaign tour from there on April 14, 2019.[14][15]

On July 5, 2019, Booker hosted a roundtable discussion on immigration in Las Vegas, Nevada, saying the panel consisted "of folks who are, in my opinion, some of the bright lights in the nation for being activists around issues that are best for our country, issues that represent our values, and, frankly, the issues that are just helping to deal with what I see as a very, very dark period in American history."[16]

Political positions


Booker has condemned the War on Drugs, calling it a "war on people"[17] and a "tremendous failure"; he has criticized Obama for not honoring state drug laws. He has also expressed support for medical marijuana research,[18] decriminalizing marijuana, ending mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders, increasing funding for prisoner re-entry programs, and bringing an end to for-profit, private prisons.[19] Booker has also cosponsored the bipartisan STATES Act proposed in the 115th Congress by Warren (Massachusetts) and Gardner (Colorado) that would exempt individuals or corporations in compliance with state cannabis laws from federal enforcement of the Controlled Substances Act.[20] Booker also supports changing discriminatory jail sentenceing laws.[21][22]

In June 2018, Booker joined with Sen. Kamala Harris (D-California) and Sen. Tim Scott (R-South Carolina) to introduce a bill to make lynching a federal hate crime. 16 other Senators signed as co-sponsors, and the bill was supported by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky). Between 1882 and 1986, nearly 200 anti-lynching bills were introduced, yet none had passed the Senate until this bill passed unanimously in December 2018,[23][24] then held at the desk of the House.[25] In February 2019, the Senate backed it with a voice vote.[26][27][28]


Booker has publicly defended the right of law-abiding citizens to own legal fire arms and blames most shootings on criminals with illegal guns.[29] He voted to prohibit people on terror watch lists from buying guns.[30] He co-sponsored legislation with Dianne Feinstein to ban assault weapons.[31] On Parkland shooting's anniversary, he and other candidates urged stricter gun laws.[32][33][34][35][36][37][38] Booker advanced his position in the same month,

... House of Representatives ... finally passed the "background check bill"[39] which is due to a lot of activism, a lot of struggle ... this was a bipartisan bill as well ... over 95% of Americans believe in common sense comprehensive background checks ... We have got to get this done[40][non-primary source needed]


Booker speaking with the media after delivering a speech to the California Democratic Party State Convention in 2019.
Booker speaking with the media after delivering a speech to the California Democratic Party State Convention in 2019.

In May 2012, Booker defended Bain Capital's record and criticized Obama's attack on private equity. In response, the Republican National Committee, created a petition called "I Stand With Cory Booker".[41]

Booker is in favor of creating so-called "baby bonds", whereby newborns would be given low-risk savings accounts (managed by the Treasury) that would be worth tens of thousands of dollars by the age of 18.[42] According to an analysis by Naomi Zwede of the Center on Social Policy and poverty at Columbia University, the baby bonds would almost entirely close the racial wealth gap among young people.[43]

Labor rights

Booker supports an increase of the minimum wage to $15 an hour.[44] Speaking to Newark airport workers in May 2017 he said, "It is un-American to be in this country, to work a full-time job and still live in poverty. That is unacceptable. The minimum wage working at a lot of these contract companies only affords them about $22,000 a year ... You cannot live and raise a family on $22,000 a year. You can't afford housing, you can't afford child care and since your company isn't helping you with retirement, you can't save for retirement."[45]

In June 2018, Booker was 1 of 8 senators to sponsor a bill amending the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to include a mandate forcing farmers to pay workers time and a half for each hour worked past the standard 40-hour work week.[46]


Booker wants to see the tech sector reach its fullest potential, and to do that, he thinks the U.S. government needs to ease up on regulations. For example, the Federal Aviation Administration has hindered drone innovation to the point where drone companies are leaving the U.S. to test and build in Europe. "We're being left behind on everything from next-generation nuclear energy to driverless cars ..." Booker said, "and we cannot get left behind".[47]

In stark contrast to Warren and Sanders, Booker invites Amazon to set up a major office (nicknamed "HQ2") in Newark, New Jersey.[48][49]


Booker has the most pro-animal welfare Senate-voting record according to the Humane Society.[50] He is vegan and says that planet Earth cannot sustain First World meat-eating habits as prosperity spreads worldwide.[51][52]

Booker backs the scientific consensus on global warming that it is man-made and is in favor of cap-and-trade or a carbon tax for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.[53] He backs the Green New Deal:

In fact, the energy and the industry of the future, we can define the way and not the Chinese do it or other countries do it. America has got to lead again. We can get a green future and an economically prosperous future which works for everybody.[54]

In September 2018, Booker was 1 of 8 senators (along with Harris) to cosponsor the Climate Risk Disclosure Act, a bill described by Warren as using "market forces to speed up the transition from fossil fuels to cleaner energy — reducing the odds of an environmental and financial disaster without spending a dime of taxpayer money."[55]

In November 2018, Booker was 1 of 25 Democratic senators to cosponsor a resolution specifying key findings of the Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change report and National Climate Assessment. The resolution affirmed the senators' acceptance of the findings and their support for bold action toward addressing climate change.[56]

Foreign policy

Booker supports scaling down U.S. involvement in Afghanistan and is against intervention in Syria.[57][58] After the US strike on Syria in April 2017, he criticized military action "without a clear plan" or authorization from Congress.[59] He supports a two-state solution to the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. On Iran, he has supported the Iran nuclear deal framework and has drawn criticism.[60][61]

Sign at the Women's March on Portland 2017, held the day after the Inauguration of Donald Trump.

Human rights

Regarding abortion, Booker opposes overturning Roe v. Wade.[53]

Booker termed the President's military transgender ban "deplorable and despicable".[62]


Booker advocates same-sex marriage[63] and claimed New Jersey's civil union law was not only bigoted, but also discriminated against New Jersey's same-sex couples who were denied 1,100 federal rights, privileges and benefits afforded to married couples.[64] After Governor Chris Christie vetoed a bill legalizing same-sex marriage in New Jersey and said the issue should be left to a public referendum of the people of New Jersey, Booker criticized him and said that civil rights are guaranteed by the US Constitution and should not be allowed on the ballot.[65] As Newark Mayor, Booker refused to perform any weddings until same-sex couples were legally allowed.[66] On October 21, 2013, the date when same-sex marriage became legal, Booker began performing same-sex and opposite-sex weddings.[67]

In November 2013, Booker co-sponsored and voted for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.[68] In January 2014, he co-sponsored the Respect for Marriage Act.[69]

In October 2018, Booker was 1 of 20 senators to sign a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urging him to reverse the rolling back of a policy that granted visas to same-sex partners of LGBT diplomats who had unions which were not recognized by their home countries, writing that too many places around the world have seen LGBT individuals "subjected to discrimination and unspeakable violence, and receive little or no protection from the law or local authorities" and that the US refusing to let LGBT diplomats bring their partners to the US would be equivalent of America upholding "the discriminatory policies of many countries around the world."[70]

Regarding racism, Booker tweeted that "Black women are nearly 4 times more likely than white women to die as a result of childbirth". [71]


Among Booker's stances on immigration, he believes immigrant detention should be eliminated to the extent possible. He has written that America needs to guarantee hormone therapy for transgender asylum seekers that have been detained.[72]

Regarding immigration detention, a joint letter dated June 2015 by 33 senators (including Gillibrand, Warren, and Sanders) criticized that as "unacceptable and goes against our most fundamental values".[73][74]

In July 2018, Booker was among 11 senators to sign a letter requesting the agencies responsible for reuniting families provide weekly updates, until every separated child was returned to their parents, in the form of a list of separated children, a list of their parents and other adult members of their families in addition to a list connecting the lists of children and parents and a briefing for the lawmakers on the strategies used to reunite families,[75] and was 1 of 22 senators to sponsor the Stop Shackling and Detaining Pregnant Women Act, which if enacted would prohibit immigration officers from detaining pregnant women in a majority of circumstances and improve conditions of care for individuals in custody.[76] In January 2019, Booker was 1 of 21 senators to sponsor the Dreamer Confidentiality Act, a bill imposing a ban on the DHS from passing information collected on DACA recipients to ICE, CBP, the DOJ, or any other law enforcement agency with exceptions in the case of fraudulent claims, national security issues, or non-immigration related felonies being investigated.[77]

In a TV interview, he was asked what the people should do,

... the appalling silence and inaction of the good people ... First of all, understand. I have said this for years. The "power of the people" is greater than "the people in power". And, the most common way that the people surrender their power is not recognizing they have in the first place. So, the first thing to do is just not to be silent. The second thing is that when I went down to the border, I was blown away by the volunteers I saw showing up there, the people that were willing to go out, literally walk out onto the bridges where people are trying to do the legal thing and present them out for asylum ... Change does not come from Washington, it comes to Washington. They can call, they can protest, they can serve, they can volunteer, they can give resources...[78][non-primary source needed]

Booker opined that the Trump wall is not an emergency.[79]

Booker at a rally opposing the American Health Care Act of 2017
Booker at a rally opposing the American Health Care Act of 2017

Health care

Booker supports holding pharmaceutical companies accountable when they "gouge folks." He co-sponsored a bill that would take away patents if a company raises prices above what other countries are raising, allowing generic drugs to make the drug cheaper. [80] In 2018 that introduced a bill that would "shine a light into drug company payments to individuals with influence over the types of drugs preferred by states’ Medicaid programs." [81] He has been criticized for taking money from pharmaceutical executives and PAC's, accruing almost a half million in donations since 2013.[82]

Booker spoke about health care,

… we are weak in America when we let people struggle and suffer in isolation… This is a common problem in our country, and we have got to start bringing these things out of the shadows and talking about them, and reigniting a sense of purpose to deal with these issues… We stigmatize people who struggle with mental illness, people who have the disease of addiction… so they are isolated and alone. And, we end up dealing with those problems and those issues when it is far more expensive to deal with them. Our prisons are full of people with mental illness or addictions. We need to start bringing those issues out into the light, stopping the horrible stigma and isolation, and finding ways together to deal with those issues… we all need to take responsibility for doing it…[83]

To hold the pharmaceutical industry raising drug prices accountable,[84] and be the cutting edge of biological research.[85] In August 2018, Booker introduced the Housing Opportunity Mobility & Equity Act.[86][87] In a TV interview, he explained how the Clinton campaign inspired him,

… hope is the active conviction that despair will never have the last word. And so, in the face of what I have seen is the most despairing moments as my evolution into adulthood where more and more people are rightfully understandably despairing about a country that could do the kind of things we do to our people. People who are senior citizens worked their lives and literally are living below poverty line because social security checks are too meager. Or, people who have … fear because they worry if they get can sick, they will not be able to afford it. Or, if their child gets sick, they will have to lose their job to be there for their kid … we are the only industrialized nation that does not have paid family leave … just frustrated ... We are so focused on Trump. Most of the things, I mentioned to you, were going on before Donald Trump was elected. Massive environmental injustice, massive economic injustice, massive … racism embedded in our systems going on before Donald Trump. But, obviously he has made it worse. He is a crisis ...[88]

Asked about his views on lead he responded

... I visited ... Cancer Alley ... where the cancer rates are off the charts because of what gets in the air and the water ... We are hurting as a nation ... But as your president, I will make a massive infrastructure investment into our communities[89] to ensure our children have clean air and clean water ... the kids drink out of bottle water in their schools because their water is full of lead ... There is too much pain. We will end it[90]



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  33. ^ Buttigieg, Pete (February 14, 2019). "A year ago, the killings in Parkland shocked our nation and awakened a generation that rose up to call on elected leaders to do better. Today we honor the memories of all those lost, and recommit to real action—not just thoughts and prayers—to keep Americans safe". Retrieved February 15, 2019.
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  35. ^ Harris, Kamala (February 14, 2019). "Today marks one year since the horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, yet Congress has failed to act on any meaningful legislation to prevent another mass shooting. This isn't a question of left or right, it's about protecting our children from gun violence". Retrieved February 15, 2019.
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  71. ^ @CoryBooker (March 4, 2019). "The US has the highest maternal mortality rate in the developed world & Black women are nearly 4 times more likely than white women to die as a result of childbirth. We must address this growing public health crisis & racial bias in our health care system" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
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  77. ^ Bernal, Rafael (January 22, 2019). "Senate Dems introduces bill to keep DACA info private". The Hill.
  78. ^ "Cory Booker Discusses Family Separations at U.S. Mexico Border Wall ... 3:00". YouTube. The View. February 1, 2019. Retrieved February 12, 2019.
  79. ^ Booker, Cory (February 14, 2019). "Trump's inability to follow through on a campaign promise is not a national emergency. Let's not forget those still struggling to rebuild their lives after this administration failed to respond effectively to real emergencies in places like Puerto Rico". Retrieved February 15, 2019.
  80. ^ Booker, Cory (February 27, 2019). "It's unacceptable that 1 in 5 Americans can't afford their medication due to skyrocketing costs. We need a comprehensive approach to lowering drug prices that includes leveraging Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices and enforcing consequences for unjust price". @CoryBooker. Retrieved March 13, 2019.
  81. ^ "Booker Introduces Bill to Shine Light on Pharma's Efforts to Manipulate Medicaid Drug Coverage Decisions | Cory Booker | U.S. Senator for New Jersey". Retrieved March 13, 2019.
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  83. ^ Booker, Cory. "We have to do a better job of tackling the problems associated with neurological diseases—better research, better health care, better support for caregivers". Twitter. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
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  85. ^ Facher, Lev. "The 'Big Pharma' candidate? As he runs for president, Cory Booker looks to shake his reputation for drug industry coziness". Yahoo News. Stat News. Retrieved February 13, 2019.
  86. ^ "Senator Booker Introduces Housing, Opportunity, Mobility, and Equity (HOME) Act". National Low Income Housing Coalition. August 2, 2018. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
  87. ^ Matthews, Dylan. "5 anti-poverty plans from 2020 Democratic presidential contenders, explained". Vox. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
  88. ^ Maddow, Rachel (February 12, 2019). "There are people who are just frustrated, and when they look toward their politics, it is a politics of tear down or take down or pitting people, as opposed to calling us to finish the unfinished business of this country". Twitter.
  89. ^ @CoryBooker (March 2, 2019). "Not just Flint, 1000+ communities have kids with even 2X blood lead levels than Flint. I wrote far reaching environmental justice leg as a Sen. If POTUS, I'll drive massive investments in water infrastructure & have stricter accountability for those responsible for injustice" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  90. ^ Booker, Cory. "We need to make major infrastructure investments in our communities to ensure clean air and water". Twitter. Retrieved February 20, 2019.

External links

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This page was last edited on 16 October 2019, at 16:28
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