Cory Booker

Senator from New Jersey
Jump to  stances on the issues
Cory Booker dropped out of the presidential race on January 13, 2020. This page is no longer being updated.
Booker is running a campaign focused on love, unity and identity. He first gained national recognition as mayor of Newark, New Jersey, at times answering pleas to shovel residents out after major snowstorms. He was elected to the US Senate in a 2013 special election.
Stanford University, B.A., 1991; Stanford University, M.A, 1992; University of Oxford, Rhodes scholar, 1994; Yale Law School, J.D., 1997
April 27, 1969
Baptist
Mayor of Newark, 2006-2013;
Partner at the law firm Booker, Rabinowitz, Trenk, Lubetkin, Tully, DiPasquale and Webster, 2002-2006;
Newark City Council member, 1998-2002;
Staff attorney at the Urban Justice Center, 1997

BOOKER IN THE NEWS

Cory Booker reflects on Ketanji Brown Jackson hearings: 'This is not about racism. It's about decency'
Updated 12:44 PM ET, Sun Mar 27, 2022
Democratic Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey said Sunday that there were moments during Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson's confirmation hearings last week that invoked a "familiar hurt" many Americans could relate to. "I got a chance to witness firsthand what I think many people in America can relate to, is when you show up in a room qualified, when you show up in a room with extraordinary expertise and credentials, there are a lot of Americans who know that hurt, that you are still going to be treated in a way that does not respect to you fully," Booker told CNN's Dana Bash on "State of the Union." Bash asked Booker, who sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee where Jackson's hearings took place, if he saw racism in the room from the Republican senators. He stopped short of calling it that, saying instead that the situation for Jackson was more about her being a woman. "No, I think this is not about racism. It's about decency," Booker, who is Black, told CNN. "I think that this is not about any kind of partisan effort." He said Republican senators had some "legitimate questioning" during the hearings, before adding, "But to me, it's just about the kind of way we're going to treat folk." "And I think it's a kind of thing that a lot of folks, women of all races, have had to endure often when they get into a room that they're qualified to be in, but are yet questioned in ways that are disappointing," he said. Jackson, who would be the first Black woman to sit on the Supreme Court if confirmed, spent three days of hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee and faced aggressive questioning from some of the panel's Republican senators that sometimes veered away from her record. They pressed Jackson for her views on issues -- critical race theory, the children's book "Antiracist Baby," the treatment of now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing -- that her supporters say have little to do with the duties of a potential high court justice. On day two of the hearings, Republican Sen. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee asked Jackson to provide a definition for the word "woman." Asked Sunday for his reaction to that episode, Booker told CNN that "there were a lot of moments like that that were deflating to me and disappointing to me." "I think what was unfortunate in the room for me was that she was getting attacks that were roundly criticized, even by people on the right, as being beyond the pale," he said. Booker, on day three of the hearings, defended Jackson against the questions raised by his GOP colleagues, telling her she was "worthy" and had "earned this spot," and putting her nomination in historic context, which moved Jackson to tears. The Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on Jackson's nomination on April 4. Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia on Friday said he would support Jackson's nomination, all but guaranteeing she will be confirmed to the Supreme Court in a 50-50 split Senate with Democratic Vice President Kamala Harris as the tie-breaking vote. It is not yet clear if Jackson will win any Republican votes. This story has been updated with additional details.
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STANCES ON THE ISSUES

climate crisis
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Booker in September 2019 unveiled a $3 trillion plan for combating the climate crisis that promises to invest in clean energy, phase out the use of fossil fuels and create a carbon-neutral economy by 2045. The plan would require fossil fuel producers to pay a carbon fee on coal, natural gas and oil production and would end tax subsidies to those industries. Booker would create a “progressive climate dividend” paid to Americans through the carbon fees on fossil fuel producers. He also would take executive action to reverse many of Trump’s actions undoing Obama-era environmental initiatives. During the first Democratic primary debate, in June 2019, Booker cited climate change as one of the biggest threats facing the US. He supports the Green New Deal and has pushed back against critics of the plan who have called it impractical. “If we used to govern our dreams that way, we would have never gone to the moon,” Booker has said on the campaign trail. He has said he would keep the US in the Paris climate accord, a landmark 2015 deal on global warming targets that Trump has pledged to abandon. More on Booker’s climate crisis policy
economy
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Booker has been known in the past as business-friendly, accepting $100 million from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for schools in Newark during his tenure as mayor. As a presidential candidate, Booker has called for more robust enforcement of antitrust laws, citing a “serious problem [in our country] with corporate consolidation.” During the first presidential debate, Booker said he would target companies like Amazon that pay low federal taxes or none at all. The senator has also discussed rolling back the 2017 Trump tax cuts. According to his campaign, Booker has stood by his opposition of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an 11-nation deal negotiated under Obama that Trump withdrew from in one of his first acts as President. He has opposed the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement – the successor deal to the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiated by Trump – as it is written. More on Booker’s economic policy
education
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As Newark mayor, Booker revamped public schools, aided by a $100 million donation from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Booker has drawn criticism for strengthening public charter schools as part of his efforts. He has pledged to raise teacher pay and commit more resources to public schools, including fully funding special education programs. Booker has proposed a “baby bonds” system that would create savings accounts for Americans when they are born; after the person turns 18, the money can be used for college tuition or homeownership or retirement. He has co-sponsored a bill that would establish a state-federal partnership aimed at helping higher education institutions provide assistance to students. More on Booker’s education policy
gun violence
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Booker has proposed federally mandated gun licenses, modeled after driver’s licenses. “If you need a license to drive a car,” he has said, “you need a license to own a gun.” His plan would also expand background checks and fund programs for communities beset by gun violence. It would ban so-called assault weapons, high-capacity magazines and bump stocks. He has proposed regulation and oversight of gun manufacturers. He would also close the “boyfriend loophole,” preventing people who abused dating partners from buying or owning firearms. More on Booker’s gun violence policy
healthcare
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Booker has co-sponsored Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare for All” proposal, legislation that would create a government-run health care plan and essentially eliminate the private insurance industry. Still, he is in favor of keeping private insurance plans. When asked in February 2019 if he would do away with private health care, he said, “Even countries that have vast access to publicly offered health care still have private health care, so no.” He is a co-sponsor of Medicare-X, which would let individuals and small businesses buy government-backed insurance policies, known as a public option, on the Affordable Care Act exchanges. Additionally, he supports lowering the Medicare age to 50. Booker has pledged to work to drive down the price of prescription drugs, including co-sponsoring a measure that would annually review whether brand-name drugs are excessively priced relative to those in other countries. He has also come out in favor of importing drugs from Canada and other developed nations. More on Booker’s health care policy
immigration
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Booker has proposed a range of executive actions to immediately roll back Trump’s immigration policies, including ending immigrant detention and family separations, and decriminalizing crossing the border without documentation. He would expand Obama-era protections for some undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children and those who are parents of American citizens. He ridiculed Trump’s national emergency declaration on the border wall, and voted against a spending bill – which ultimately passed and was signed into law – that provided $1.357 billion for 55 miles of new barriers. Booker has also endorsed accepting a minimum of 110,000 refugees annually, a significant increase over the historically low levels of resettlement during the Trump administration. More on Booker’s immigration policy

LATEST POLITICAL NEWS

China launches long-range airstrike drills around Taiwan on fourth day of military exercises
Updated 12:36 AM ET, Mon Aug 8, 2022
Chinese forces took part in drills focused on land attacks and long-range airstrikes around Taiwan on Sunday, its military said, on what was expected to be the final day of extensive exercises rolled out in response to a visit to the island by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The Eastern Theater Command of the Chinese military said on Sunday around noon local time that it conducted live-fire drills in the waters and airspace around Taiwan "as planned." "The drills focused on joint fire land strikes and long-range air strike capabilities," the command said in a statement posted to its official account on the social media platform Weibo, without specifying whether the drills have ended. The exercises, planned to take place in six zones around the island, began Thursday and were scheduled to last until Sunday at noon local time in Beijing, Chinese state media reported. Taiwan's Defense Ministry said that as of 5 p.m. local time on Sunday, 66 Chinese warplanes and 14 Chinese vessels were detected operating around the Taiwan Strait. Among the 22 jets entering the airspace around Taiwan, 12 crossed the median line, the statement read. The ministry previously called the drills a "simulated attack against the main island of Taiwan and Taiwan's naval vessels" -- a slight dial-up of language from Saturday when it said that Chinese military drills around the island could be a "possible simulated attack." Taiwan's military "closely monitored" the situation and deployed aircraft and vessels to "appropriately" react to Chinese military drills around the island, the Defense Ministry added. It also said drones "intruded" into outlying islands controlled by Taiwan. China announced the drills -- whose scale marks a significant escalation from past activities -- within an hour of the arrival of Pelosi and a congressional delegation in Taiwan on Tuesday evening. The stop, which was expected but not announced beforehand, was part of a larger Asia tour. Chinese officials had repeatedly warned Washington of unspecified repercussions in the lead-up to the expected trip. In addition to the drills, Beijing also launched a raft of diplomatic penalties, including canceling future phone calls between Chinese and US defense leaders and suspending bilateral climate talks. The Chinese Communist Party views self-governing Taiwan as its territory, despite never having controlled it, and has long vowed to "reunify" the island with the Chinese mainland -- by force if necessary. The previous days' drills had seen a number of air and maritime operations around the island, including the launch of 11 ballistic missiles on Thursday -- some of which flew over the island of Taiwan and landed in Japan's exclusive economic zone. That marked the first time China had sent missiles over the island. On Saturday, 14 vessels and 20 planes operated by the Chinese military were detected around the strait, according to Taiwan's Defense Ministry. Of the 20 aircraft, 14 crossed the median line, it added. On Friday, 68 Chinese warplanes were reported in the Taiwan Strait, according to the ministry. Of those, 49 entered Taiwan's air defense identification zone -- a buffer of airspace commonly referred to as an ADIZ. That was just a few planes short of the record set last year when 56 Chinese warplanes entered the ADIZ on the same day. Taiwan's Premier Su Tseng-chang on Sunday reiterated Taiwan's condemnation of the drills. "Not only Taiwan but other countries in the region as well as freedom-loving countries like the US and so on have vehemently protested and condemned China's arrogant military operations disrupting regional peace and stability," he said during a press engagement. "We call on the Chinese government to not flex its military muscles and disrupt regional peace." A US National Security Council spokesperson on Saturday called China's recent military activities around Taiwan a "significant escalation in China's efforts to change the status quo." "They are provocative, irresponsible, and raise the risk of miscalculation," the spokesperson said. "They are also at odds with our long-standing goal of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, which is what the world expects." US allies have also come forward to condemn China's actions, including in a joint statement issued Friday by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong, and Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa following their meeting on the sidelines of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Cambodia. The diplomats "condemned (China's) launch of ballistic missiles," including those the Japanese government said landed in its exclusive economic zone, for "raising tension and destabilizing the region," and called on China "to immediately cease the military exercises," according to the statement released by the US State Department. China hit back on Saturday evening, with its embassy in Australia calling the US "the biggest saboteur and destabilizer of peace in the Taiwan Strait" and disputing the "legal basis" for Japan's claims regarding the missile landings. "China is the victim of political provocation from the US. The actions taken by the Chinese government to safeguard state sovereignty and territorial integrity and curb the separatist activities are legitimate and justified," a statement from the embassy read.
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