May 20th, 2012
03:00 PM ET
9 years ago

Political jabs are 'nauseating,' mayor says

(CNN) – Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, New Jersey, a Democrat, said Sunday that some of the current politicking makes him sick - including criticism of Mitt Romney from his own party.

Booker, whose national standing is on the rise, distanced himself from attacks on Romney's record at the private equity firm Bain Capital, which he said make him "uncomfortable."

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"I'm not going to sit here and indict private equity. To me we're getting to a ridiculous point in America," Booker said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "If you look at the totality of Bain Capital's record, they've done a lot to support businesses, to grow businesses, and this, to me, I'm very uncomfortable with."

Booker compared Romney's background to his own as mayor and called for the attacks from both parties to cease. The two-term mayor has supported significant budget cuts in his city that he said were necessary to correct its fiscal order.

"This kind of stuff is nauseating to me on both sides. It's nauseating to the American public. Enough is enough, stop attacking private equity. Stop attacking Jeremiah Wright," Booker said. "This stuff has got to stop because what it does is, it undermines to me what this country should be focused on."

Romney's history in the private sector and a Republican-backed proposal for an ad linking President Barack Obama to his controversial former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., have occupied much of the campaign chatter of late.

Team Obama has condemned Romney and his partners for profiting while some of the companies with which he was involved laid off workers or filed for bankruptcy. Romney's campaign has defended his record as an example of capitalism and accused the Obama re-election campaign of waging class warfare.

Ultimately, Booker, an Obama supporter, said the 2012 election is about "two men with fundamentally different ideals."

"The sexy stuff of campaigns that the media plays over and over again that we wasted time talking about is this negative stuff," Booker said. "The reality is – and I listen to Obama. I have Obama surrogate notes here, they're talking about the positive issues."

After an onslaught of attention following his Sunday show appearance, Booker took to YouTube Sunday afternoon to reiterate his support of the president and elaborate on his frustrations with current state of political campaigns.

Booker said Obama "more than deserves re-election," but that he hopes the general election will focus on the "issues that count."

"I am indeed upset. I am indeed frustrated," Booker said. "But I believe the American public, working together can more and more denounce this type of campaigning and more and more focus on the issues that count."

Also see:

Rubio unleashes harsh attack on Obama in South Carolina

Gingrich stumps for Romney, calls for unity

NAACP backs same-sex marriage

Bush to return to White House for ceremony

Filed under: 2012 • Cory Booker • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (175 Responses)
  1. MaryM

    Booker for President 2016

    May 20, 2012 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  2. Dennis

    Republicans can't talk positive stuff because, well, they have nothing. I am not sure where the Republican Party went that I used to belong to. Now we are just stuck with attack ads, dirty tricks, looking out for the 1%, since they have nothing positive to offer to the working class Americans.

    May 20, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  3. judy

    this guy is a commer. We will see lots more of him. Obama 2012

    May 20, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  4. Paul

    The only difference is that Mitt is using his time at Bain as one of his strengths to be president, then it should be debated what they did there and how that experience is good or bad to be president. Just as the GOP uses the Presidents experience as president and his record. When it comes to personal attacks he is right, but attacking his time at Bain is not a personal attack, its attacking Romney's record.

    May 20, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  5. Sirned

    Venture capitalism and vulture capitalism should be discussed. And Romney needs to explain his part and his thoughts about this issue....Shipping jobs and destroying jobs to create wealth for a few effects millions of our economic well being... A nutty preacher doesn't

    May 20, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  6. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Negative crap works. If it were not for Mittens spending over 50 million dollars on negative ads attacking Perry, Newt, and religious Rick; Mittens would not even be the GOP candidate.

    May 20, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  7. SeeThruIt2

    The Jeremiah Wright ad issue was a porposal from a staffer at one of the Super PACs that was discovered by the media and turned into an issue by the Obama staff. It was not from Romney or his campaign. The attacks on Bain Capital are directly from Obama and his own campaign.

    If he's really disgusted with the negative attack ads, he needs to take a more objective look at who he's supporting.

    May 20, 2012 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  8. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    According to the flipper, I don't know what I said, but I stand behind it. Mittens, a true severely conservative creature.

    May 20, 2012 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  9. Alan

    American agrees, Obama is nauseating.

    May 20, 2012 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  10. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    I would like to retire this summer, but I know if Mittens gets elected, there will be more unpaid for wars, more tax breaks for the wealthy and big oil raising the national debt, social security and medicare will be changed to the Ryan Romney economic debacle, the stock market will tank like it did in our Bush republican near depression, affordable health care will be eliminated, more jobs will be sent overseas, more taxes will be evaded by the rich, environmental regulations will be non existent, Wall Street and big banks will again be allowed to act recklessly, and we will once again become the laughing stock of the world. I don't think Mittens is agile enough to duck the shoe throwers.

    May 20, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  11. Patrick

    If Mayor Booker's star is on rise it just took a dip with his comments today; a man cannot serve two masters. I do not see a long future for him after today.

    May 20, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  12. Joe

    A sane voice in the wilderness of American political theater of the absurd 2012.

    May 20, 2012 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  13. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Republican candidates Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, Michelle Bachmann and Rick Santorum started the attacks on Romney about Bain as well as the attacks on President Obama and Wright. Republicans are vile, greedy obstructionist and don't give a darn about anyone but the rich.

    May 20, 2012 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  14. FedUp

    All politics is nauseating. Anyone knows that nothing that comes out of a politicians mouth has a snowball's chance of coming anywhere near the truth.

    May 20, 2012 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  15. Brian

    Look at everybody else's morals and ethics, not mine.

    May 20, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  16. scott

    The reason the Democrats and Obama are attacking Romney and Bain Capital is to hide their own failures with this country. Since Obama took office this country has gone down hill. The crook Obama has to go, vote Romney 2012

    May 20, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  17. Sf

    Republicans are the ones who have the negative agenda..they have since day one obama took office and when dems fight back then they blame both sides...this country is retarded! No offense to the retarded community.

    May 20, 2012 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  18. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Is money laundering and tax evasion criminal activities? That would make Mittens the crook.

    May 20, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  19. Julie

    Way to go Mayor Booker! Finally we found a democrat with a brain!

    May 20, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  20. lisasc

    I agree with Corey Booker. I like the way he and Gov. Cristie work together. This is how Government should work. Local gov't could teach Washington a lot.

    May 20, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    Shame on hard working Americans for bringing to light that shopping at the "Corporate store" is becoming as much of a reality as those "Company stores" were back in the early 1930s, Mr. Mayor?

    Yeah. I can see where that might be too "nauseating" to talk about. Especially for those who are just a few steps away from re-enacting another such a disaster upon America. One more of those little secrets Mitt Romney wants kept secret. You know what I'm speaking of, Mr. Booker. All those under paid Staples and Domino Pizza jobs Mitt Romney keeps bragging about having "created" as decent wage jobs. In his mind, those jobs offer plenty enough money to feed a family reduced to living in their car. And shame on those who have been forced into working these jobs for not being "grateful" enough, huh, Cory?

    There is a real disconnect between actually living in mainstreet America and a politicans viewpoint of what they think living in mainstreet America is. Cory Booker is no different. Makes you wonder who is funding HIS campaign coffers.

    May 20, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  22. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Well Mr. Mayor... If you think that outsourcing jobs and robbing pension funds is a great way to make money, on the backs/suffering of others, perhaps you should get a different job. I find YOU nauseating as well.

    May 20, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  23. DoNotWorry

    I disagree about the attacks on Bain Capital and vulture capitalism. This was a nasty gambit that got out of hand in the 80s and is just that... nasty stuff. Worse, Rmoney is proud of his record at Bain Capital, and proud that he pulled 1/4 trillion over and above his massive living expenses. He says his time at Bain will make him a good President. I say more of Rmoney's vulture capitalism and the U.S. will keel over dead. It is appropriate to discuss. The nutty preacher? Considering the history of blacks in this country, I have some empathy... but not much. Time to move on since not one black person alive today was a slave. As an Irish-American... I could still be asking Britain for reparations for their treatment of my people, but I am not. Time to move forward on that issue.

    May 20, 2012 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  24. twophad

    I think,since Romney hauls out his record as a businessman for its alleged positives, it is not unreasonable for people to take a hard look at the negatives. What's up with Booker, anyway? It doesn't bother him the way the Democratic candidate has been portrayed, in ways that are clearly ridiculous, but any hint of criticism of the Republican is "nauseating'? Get with your party of choice, Booker–you're not a Democrat.

    May 20, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  25. Four and The Door

    The Obama Administration came into office on a political play ignoring actual capabilities of the candidate. Since then, Obama has shown how politics can get in the way of effective results. This has been an expensive lesson for our country.

    Mitt Romney will be elected primarily on his capabilities for leadership, knowledge of economics and his strong values. This will be a change that gets Washington working for the good of the nation again instead of the good of the politician and the political agenda.

    May 20, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
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