Sen. Cory Booker told New York Magazine that he would “of course” consider a run for the presidency. Booker said that at this point “it would be irresponsible not to” consider running for the highest office in the land.
The New Jersey Democrat had a brush with the presidency when he was one of the top three contenders to be Hillary Clinton’s running mate in 2016.
The list, which was originally 35 names long, was winnowed down to three the day before the Democratic National Convention, and the final decision was made based on perceived authenticity, according to New York Magazine.
“We really always thought he was a very serious candidate,” former Clinton Campaign chairman John Podesta said. “He campaigns with a kind of moral positioning, and he brought out a lot of sparkle in her.”
Nick Merrill, who was a Clinton campaign adviser, says he was torn. “From afar, he (Booker) never really did it for me,” Merrill said. “I find the constant snapping in Senate hearings to be a little ridiculous, and the opposite of authentic.”
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand had reportedly told Booker, “If you want to talk about love and kindness and decency, talk about those things, because it’s where you are,” according to The Washington Examiner.
“I feel like if I start poll-testing or shaping myself, where we start operating out of fear, I think that’s going to dim my light and my impact,” Booker said.
Booker has been recently in the news due to his possible ethics violation in releasing documents that he received as part of the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing for Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
Booker’s decision to say in front of cameras that he would openly defy the committee rules and committee chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley, made him somewhat of a hero among Democratic voters.
However, by the time that Booker made good on his promise to release said documents, they were already approved to be seen by the public.
“Republicans on the Committee have said that the documents had already been approved for release before 4 a.m. this morning,” Cooper said. “Senator Cornyn basically accused you of a political stunt to bolster a possible run for the presidency. Was that just a stunt?”
The Democratic senator didn’t exactly answer the question, saying, “Well, I mean the amusing thing about that is what Cornyn first said, is he threatened me with expulsion. He said what I was doing was unbecoming to the office I was holding it. … I’ve already released over 20 committee confidential documents in violation of what they say are the Senate rules in which Cornyn said I should be expelled for.
“So I am violating those laws. I have been doing all day, and it was an unjust law. You see there’s no consequence.”
Cooper pressed further, saying that he received confirmation from a record representative that the documents were cleared for release, per the senator’s staff’s request, before they were released by Booker at 4 a.m.
When asked by Cooper how that was constant with his declarations of “violating the laws,” the potential presidential candidate countered him.
Booker said that he broke the rules the night before, that he was continuing to break the “sham rules” and that “maybe they’re rushing to catch up to me.”
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