May 20th, 2012
03:00 PM ET
8 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:

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Filed under: 2012 • Cory Booker • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (175 Responses)
  1. Morning1Sun

    It is hilarious when I read some of the comments about how Romney will bring this country out of the hole President Obama put us in. They forget when President Obama took office we were in crisis mode. We were in the worst recession since the depression. It takes more than three and a half years to put us back on the right track. We can see we are finally coming back from the mess the Republlicans put us in, in the first place. How can people forget where we were and how we are slowly becoming better. People forget that people like Romney put us in the recession in the first place. When Romney talks and promises he will do this or do that, he is not sincere. He is reciting a speech. He is not going to remember what he promises because promises don't mean anything to him. Just look at his body language. He just wants to be president for his own personal reasons. He is going to let the other Republicans run the show because he does not care. I am so afraid he will put us in another war. If we think he is incapable in being our President, can you imagine the other world leaders think. I bet the debates will show who is a real President. Plresident Obama really cares about us that is why a lot of people like him. His heart is shown through his eyes. You can tell he really means what he says. Let the debates begin.

    May 20, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  2. btlprod

    I will point out that unlike the President's Ad slamming a failure, ignoring successes, of Bain Capital (when Romney wasn't even there) the Wright Ad was never run. In fact it was only proposed and rejected both by the Super PAC that was looking for ideas and Romney himself.

    May 20, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  3. sbssue1

    So Romney invested and the company still failed; how many others just bought the company and moved it to Mexico and the like? When times are bad, one cannot always work miracles as these people think. I applaud Booker for his independence! He's certainly not a follower and he too wants our country turned around for the better. Good Job.

    May 20, 2012 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  4. gg

    the bain doctrine would destroy whats left of the middle class

    May 20, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  5. caesarbc

    Politics are too polarizing right now. It happens every 70 to 80 years or so until a world war breaks out.
    Human behavior is patternable.

    May 20, 2012 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  6. caesarbc

    Politics are too polarized right now. It happens every 70 years or so until a world war breaks out.

    May 20, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  7. Lisa

    @4 and door: you amaze me with your profound refusal to hold Repulicans accountable for any dang thing. That alone takes your credibly away. Now when I see your posts I jump for joy at how you'll soon become "4 more". Obama will soon expose Romney for the flip flopping panderer that he is.

    May 20, 2012 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  8. PEOLE USA 2012

    what does it matter your all just TALK

    May 20, 2012 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  9. Jaded

    "I'm not going to sit here and indict private equity" and Bain has "done a lot to support businesses". This idiot just campaigned against his own party. I guarantee his comments will become a pro Romney super pac ad this week. I think Booker inhaled too much smoke during that fire rescue.

    May 20, 2012 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  10. kuewa

    On the other hand, Romney's performance at Bain is a valid issue since he continually touts this :"business experience" as a primary credential. In this respect, while Bain may have helped some companies, I have yet to hear of a company that was helped under Romney's guidance. Romney points to job creation at Staples, but this seems to have occurred after he left Bain.

    May 20, 2012 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  11. CJPA

    Good-o for you Cory. I hope you can continue to survive and flourish with your ideals and values! You are absolutely correct. If you can withstand the temptation of the money and corruption, you could be "our guy" some day soon!!

    May 20, 2012 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  12. Jaded

    Romney invoked Rev Wright's name into the conversation during an interview with Hannity three months ago. Romney helped fan those flames of hate. And, when that fire started to get out of control causing a severe backlash against his campaign, only then he suddenly repudiated the use of Rev Wright as a divisive political tactic.

    May 20, 2012 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  13. Four and The Door

    Morning1Sun
    It is hilarious when I read some of the comments about how Romney will bring this country out of the hole President Obama put us in. They forget when President Obama took office we were in crisis mode. We were in the worst recession since the depression. It takes more than three and a half years to put us back on the right track.
    ______________________________________________________________________________________________
    Obama took a bad situation and made it worse. He was the wrong guy at the wrong time. If you remember, the first thing Obama did when he got into office was to pass an $850 billion spending bill with promises of millions of jobs. Of course it passed. He had a Democratic majority in the House and a filibuster-proof Democratic supermajority in The Senate. Republicans and Americans across the country fought to stop this partisan charade. But he signed it anyway. And it didn't work. That's just the first step of huge partisan spending bills. Still here we are worse than when he started.
    American voters put a stop to his rampant spending in mid-term elections and the downward spiral has been dampened. We will finish the job in November and get a real recovery started. Obama is not the guy. Mitt Romney is.

    May 20, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  14. Sf

    Morming1sun i couldnt agree more with u!

    Obama 2012!!!!!

    May 20, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  15. Gurgyl

    GOP is so nauseating, nonsense in USA.

    May 20, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  16. John

    I don't care about Reverend Wright, Bain Capital, or who did what in high school (really? You know the Constitution doesn't let people run for President until they're 35 for a REASON – that being that most people do stupid things when they are CHILDREN!). I care about the economy and national security. I care about the debt (not DEFICIT reduction but DEBT reduction). Stop wasting the voters' time with all these petty squabbles and start giving us SPECIFICS about what each candidate intends to do on IMPORTANT matters.

    May 20, 2012 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  17. abe

    Mayor Booker is right asking to curtail all those accusations by both sides but he forgets to remember that their are trying to make Obama a one time president and the Republicans should try to work together with the Democrats instead of wasting their energy attacking Obama and forgetting it was their previous administration that put us where we are. Romney has no cure for our country and is wasting his time attacking Obama and painting a bad picture of the president. Mayor Booker should be concerned how we can re-elect Obama and let the Republicans dig their own hole. The concert5ted effort to make Obama a one time president by itself
    is a dislike of the person and not his presidency.

    May 20, 2012 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  18. Lynda/Minnesota

    "He's certainly not a follower and he too wants our country turned around for the better. Good Job."

    The GOP dust off old footage of Jeremiah Wright and Booker counters with "discussing Mitt's Bain days makes him nauseous"? Not only is he a follower, but he's got a very bad case of the Corporate Greed virus too many of our politicos end up succumbing to.

    Which leaves the American people with who exactly to turn to for truth and honesty? Our Corporate owned media?

    May 20, 2012 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  19. Lynda/Minnesota

    "He's certainly not a follower and he too wants our country turned around for the better. Good Job."

    The GOP dust off old footage of Jeremiah Wright and Booker counters with "discussing Mitt's Bain days makes him nauseous"? Not only is he a follower, but he's got a very bad case of the Corporate Greed virus too many of our politicos end up succumbing to.

    Which leaves the American people with who exactly to turn to for truth and honesty? Our Corporate owned media? Ha!

    May 20, 2012 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  20. Loop

    I agree. This has got to stop. The candidates should run on their record. Romney was a Governer, Ran the Salt Lake City Olympics and was at Bain. Obama was a Community Organizer, a JUNIOR Senator and Then President of the most Powerful nation in the World. How we could elevate a JUNIOR Senator is beyond me and it has shown over the last three and a half years that he does not know how to Govern. Just ram stuff down our throats.

    May 20, 2012 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  21. ct

    what does romney run on since he was a failure as governor for massachusetts..47th in job creation, leaving massachusetts with debts, the only good thing he only got accomplished is romney care which his own party harshly criticized...

    May 20, 2012 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  22. corneliusvansant

    Typical politician; he stands in the middle straddling. Give us a break; time to take a side and come down with one philosophy or the other – big government – or liberty.

    May 20, 2012 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  23. normajean @ verizon ,com

    Word for word, it sounds to me like the slams are heavily from the Repuib side as they have ben for three plus years!!!!!When was the first and last time that any Repub ever said that anything the president said or did was right???/Take your time.......these things are hard to come by!!!!!!

    May 20, 2012 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  24. normajean @ verizon ,com

    As to the questian of whether Romney was with Bain at any particular time.....that happens to be his biggest claim when it comes to accomplishments. Either he was or he wasn't there...it's what he leans his story on!

    May 20, 2012 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  25. Sue

    I have a lot of respect for Cory Booker, but he is wrong here. Romney said he was a "job creator" creating "100,000 jobs". This is not true and needs to be highlighted. Highlighting truth is not "nauseating". Running smear campaigns are, yes, no matter what side. But highlighting the truth is not. If the electorate is to make an informed decision in electing the President of the United States then they had better be informed and not vote by sound bites. Since this President has been in office there has nothing but smears against him....not American, socialist, nazi, not "one of us", not born here....and on and on it went....and hasn't ended.....Is there anyone repudiating that...NO! When Romney was interviewed on the radio he said Obama is trying to make this a secular country and has listened too much to Rev. Wright. That type of campaigning is nauseating....but highlighting the truth is not.

    May 20, 2012 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
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