Quit Your BS, He Explained

fucb

According to the Star-Ledger, Cory Booker bravely runs into burning buildings and rescues dogs from the cold, but he’s a “centrist” when facing the NRA. And the reporter who wrote the piece isn’t taking any shit.

I don’t know what’s going on between Booker and his hometown paper – maybe you Jersey dwellers do – but I do like to see reporters sticking up for themselves, and I don’t understand what Booker hopes to gain by moving to the center on guns. Lautenberg is quoted in that piece with a pretty uncompromising take on the NRA, and mayors seem to agree with Bloomberg (whose rallies Booker has been dodging). Unless Booker has some great insight all of his peers have missed, either he thinks he can court some rural Jersey votes, or he thinks there’s some campaign cash coming his way if he distinguishes himself from other Democrats.

(via Romenesko)

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75 replies
  1. 1
    Alex S. says:

    Booker’s positions are obviously chosen for a national audience. He just hates being called out for that.

  2. 2
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    Tough call. The only time I’ve ever been quoted by a reporter it was, well, to put it nicely, not what I meant at all. Selective quoting and all that. And Brooker strikes me as the kind of guy who loves to take both sides of a position.

    However, I do know several reporters and they’re all straight-up people who wouldn’t pull that kind of shit, have no use for it, and don’t write with an agenda.

    So who do you go with?

    I gotta have more info. This reporter might be straight, or the local hack. I have no context, and tweets between two twits isn’t giving me any.

  3. 3
    redshirt says:

    TWITTER FIGHT!

  4. 4
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Cory Boo ker reminds me of Letterman’s anecdote about Jay Leno. It’s great that he was there in his ’36 Deusenberg to change that tire for that old couple. How exactly did the photographers get there before he changed it?

    After the way he used his MTP debut to shake his money-maker at Jamie Dimon– stabbing Obama in the back with a rubber knife, I have yet to see anything about him to make me share his high opinion of himself

  5. 5
    Svensker says:

    Well, see, Booker was talking about gus, not guns. There’s your problem.

  6. 6
    Maude says:

    On his radio show last week, a man who knew how to do these things offered to teach gun safety classes for free. Booker didn’t meet with him. Booker said on air, “gun safety isn’t high on my priorities list”.
    It makes me nervous. He could have been, as the Mayor of Newark, a great voice against stockpiling guns.

  7. 7
    Schlemizel says:

    A) why do you automatically believe the reporter?
    2) Playing towards the NRA is probably a ‘smart’ move if you are interested in bigger offices. Not just the possibility of campaign cash but gun nuts tend to be single issue focused. The rest of us look at a broader range. The result is leaning toward gun nut does not hurt & probably helps – the other way its the opposite.
    i) sure seems to be a lot of interest in a mayor with no national experience. How many other folks who have been rumored to be thinking about maybe possibly running for what might be an open Senate seat have been front paged here?

  8. 8
    askew says:

    I really don’t think Corey is going to be soft on gun control. Not as a mayor of major city nor as a senate candidate in NJ. It just isn’t a winning position in that state/city.

    I think the blogosphere’s hatred of Corey is pretty silly. The guy has been a remarkable mayor in a city with a ton of problems. Yes, he said nice things about Wall Street, but WS provides employment for a lot of his constituents.

  9. 9
    dmsilev says:

    @Svensker:

    Well, see, Booker was talking about gus, not guns. There’s your problem.

    Where does Booker stand on gnu control? It’s an important issue.

  10. 10
    Doug Galt says:

    @Alex S.:

    Booker’s positions are obviously chosen for a national audience. He just hates being called out for that.

    Bingo.

  11. 11
    DougMN says:

    I agree with Alex S. – this is aimed at a national audience. Brooker thinks that he can mollify the gun nuts – he’s as stupid as all the other Dems that think this. They will never vote for him no matter what he does, so he should quit pandering.

  12. 12
    trollhattan says:

    I put Booker on my “suspicious motives” list last summer, and this ain’t helping, Cory.

    You’ve probably seen or are now seeing the headlines Booker generated by calling the Obama campaign’s attacks on Mitt Romney’s private equity background “nauseating” and likening them to efforts by some on the right to inject Rev. Jeremiah Wright into the campaign.

    I don’t think I’d trust him to haul me from a fire, nomsayn?
    http://www.salon.com/2012/05/2.....from_hell/

  13. 13
    mistermix says:

    @Schlemizel: I generally believe a newsppaer reporter when they say they contacted a well-established politician for a quote and printed what they got. Print reporters generally pride themselves on doing that right, and political staffers give quotes like that in print so they don’t get f’d up.

  14. 14

    @askew:

    I think the blogosphere’s hatred of Corey is pretty silly. The guy has been a remarkable mayor in a city with a ton of problems. Yes, he said nice things about Wall Street, but WS provides employment for a lot of his constituents.

    Except it wasn’t just “nice things about Wall Street.” The man literally said that attacking Mitt Romney’s private equity background was “nauseating.”

    If that isn’t what carrying water for the powerful looks like, then I have no clue what does.

  15. 15
    Roger Moore says:

    @dmsilev:

    Where does Booker stand on gnu control?

    I think he’s more of a BSD kinda guy. Richard Stallman is a DFH just about everyone likes to punch.

  16. 16
    The Other Chuck says:

    @dmsilev:

    Where does Booker stand on gnu control? It’s an important issue.

    Cold. Dead. Hooves.

  17. 17
    aimai says:

    @DougMN:

    He would have to go a long way from merely “mollifying” them to actively campaigning with a glock strapped to his leg and perhaps gin up a history of torture a la Alan West because although he doesn’t seem to know it he is black black black and the Mayor of a CITY in the North East. That’s three strikes against him from the NRA perspective. When are the dems going to get it: the NRA will never support a Dem in a Dem/Republican fight regardless of the relative positions on guns each one takes. The NRA is in no doubt of something the dems often seem to have trouble grasping: what matters is party and brand loyalty, not the actions of milquetoasts who just want to skate by with the least notice paid to them possible.

  18. 18
    mistermix says:

    @Roger Moore: Booker would support Open Source but he thinks FSF goes too far, though he respects Stallman’s role in starting the debate, blah blah blah.

  19. 19
    Schlemizel says:

    @mistermix:

    Your faith is stronger than mine then. Not that I don’t believe him, just that I have no more reason to believe him than I do Mayor Booker at this point.

    That just leaves 2 & i.

  20. 20
    shortstop says:

    @Schlemizel:

    i) sure seems to be a lot of interest in a mayor with no national experience. How many other folks who have been rumored to be thinking about maybe possibly running for what might be an open Senate seat have been front paged here?

    How many have a Boo ker-quality self-promotion machine? Are you really suggesting that BJ plucked this guy from obscurity just to criticize him?

  21. 21
    Ben Cisco says:

    @dmsilev:

    Where does Booker stand on gnu control? It’s an important issue.

    More specifically, where is he on old gnus versus gnu gnus?

  22. 22
    shortstop says:

    @mistermix: Not to mention it’s exceedingly easy for the reporter to show his work and for Boo.ker’s side, if they gave him stuff he didn’t use, to show that as well.

  23. 23
    Paul in KY says:

    @aimai: I wonder if the NRA sometimes fans these flames or delusions by having some of their minions imply to Cory’s people (or another Democrat) that an NRA endorsement could theoretically be a possbility?

  24. 24
    eemom says:

    um, if he was dumb enough to say he wasn’t asked when he was and his response is on the record, his actual position on anything is the least of his worries?

  25. 25
    Maude says:

    @trollhattan:
    If a camera was there, you’d be hauled out.

  26. 26
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @askew:

    but WS provides employment for a lot of his constituents.

    B00ker’s constituents who may work on Wall Street take the train in and work at barely-making it salaries. No campaign contributions there. The Wall Street people from NJ who matter wouldn’t set foot in Newark city limits without an armed escort.

  27. 27
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Paul in KY: Most marks are self-selecting; if he gets himself p0wned, it’s because they saw him coming a mile away.

  28. 28
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    When are the dems going to get it: the NRA will never support a Dem in a Dem/Republican fight regardless of the relative positions on guns each one takes.

    @aimai: Nope. From the 2012 election cycle:

    Manchin, Joe (D-WV) Senate $4,500

    Matheson, Jim (D-UT) House $6,950
    Dingell, John D (D-MI) House $5,000
    Ross, Mike (D-AR) House $5,000
    Barrow, John (D-GA) House $4,950
    Holden, Tim (D-PA) House $4,950
    Shuler, Heath (D-NC) House $4,950
    Chandler, Ben (D-KY) House $4,000
    Bishop, Sanford (D-GA) House $3,650
    Critz, Mark (D-PA) House $3,500
    Hochul, Kathleen (D-NY) House $3,000
    Kissell, Larry (D-NC) House $3,000
    Michaud, Mike (D-ME) House $3,000
    Ryan, Tim (D-OH) House $3,000
    Schrader, Kurt (D-OR) House $3,000
    Altmire, Jason (D-PA) House $2,500
    Baca, Joe (D-CA) House $2,500
    Cardoza, Dennis (D-CA) House $2,500
    Peterson, Collin C (D-MN)House $2,500
    Cuellar, Henry (D-TX) House $2,000
    Kind, Ron (D-WI) House $2,000
    McIntyre, Mike (D-NC) House $2,000
    Rahall, Nick (D-WV) House $2,000
    Walz, Timothy J (D-MN) House $2,000
    Higgins, Brian M (D-NY) House $1,000
    Lujan, Ben R (D-NM) House $1,000
    Owens, Bill (D-NY) House $1,000

    So cheap our politics and lives are. The total layout by the NRA for all races in 2012 was $719,596, both Dems and Republicans. That’s all.

  29. 29
    Ben Franklin says:

    Booker is just reading the hand-writing on the wall.

    Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin

    https://www.fbo.gov/?s=opportunity&mode=form&id=d791b6aa0fd9d3d8833b2efa08300033&tab=core&_cview=0

  30. 30
    YoohooCthulhu says:

    This is unsurprising. Booker is a similar personality type to Gavin Newsom, another large city mayor with a huge self-promotion machine.

  31. 31
    The Red Pen says:

    @Svensker:

    Well, see, Booker was talking about gus, not guns. There’s your problem.

    “It says gun.”

    “No, it definitely looks like gub.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UHOgkDbVqc

  32. 32
    Paul in KY says:

    @Ben Cisco: True dat…

  33. 33
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Midnight Marauder: If that isn’t what carrying water for the powerful looks like, then I have no clue what does.

    not just carrying water, but being so flop-sweat desperate to announce that he’s a water carrier. That was just an embarrassing performance in so many different ways.

    Self-promoting, self regarding politicians…? Dog bites man, but Booker is so comically ham-fisted about it. I’m sure Rachel Maddow is clearing her first segment so her old college buddy Cory can come on and tell her everyone’s being very unfair to him, and she can agree with a matching veneer of petulance and victimization. And I love Rachel Maddow. And I think Lautenberg oughta go sit on a porch somewheres.

  34. 34
    Paul in KY says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: If you add those amounts up, it’s 85 grand (roughly). Chump change for NRA.

  35. 35
    SteveinSC says:

    @Ben Cisco: gnu? guns? gus? gnu gnus? It’s all ubuntu to me. On the other hand, I do know Corey Booger loves banks and Wall Street.

  36. 36
    mai naem says:

    Why is everybody spelling Boo ker that way? Is it getting stuck in wp hell or something?

    Anyhoo, I was kind of surprised that Boo ker got so much crap on a thread last week. I thought I was the only who got bluedog vibes from him. I don’t think he’s as bad as Harold Ford but I think he’s capable of being as bad as Artur Davis in the sense that Corey Booker is as smart as Artur Davis. Harold Ford just comes across as not the sharpest knife in the drawer and a blue dog on top of that. The only thing that keeps me from totally going off on Boo ker is that Rachel Maddow seems to be buddies with him and I figure she wouldn’t be that friendly with a blue dog Artur Davis type.

  37. 37
    burnspbesq says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    The Wall Street people from NJ who matter wouldn’t set foot in Newark city limits without an armed escort.

    False. Now that the NHL lockout has been resolved, several thousand of them will be at every Devils home game. That may be the only time they go to Newark, but they do go.

  38. 38
    burnspbesq says:

    The Star-Ledger does a great job of covering high school sports. The rest of it is pretty mediocre.

  39. 39
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: Shuler was Blew Dog to the core, Kissell (my rep till I moved) tried to straddle the fence and got invited to sit and spin for his trouble. I do not know McIntyre.

  40. 40
    Ben Cisco says:

    @mai naem: It used to be, but I’m posting it now without incident, so, TYWP I guess.

  41. 41
    burnspbesq says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    If that’s your view, then you’ve got your work cut out for you finding a credible Dem to run for Lautenberg’s seat in 2014, or you risk handing it to some odious piece of wingnut shit like Scott Garrett.

  42. 42
    shortstop says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: Was anyone on that list in a true battle with a Repub (rather than a case of big business/a special interest buying influence from a certain winner)? I think that was aimai’s point.

  43. 43
    Alex S. says:

    @mai naem:

    Rachel Maddow is a friend of his? Interesting, he never had a girlfriend by the way…. I can imagine that he wants to be Mr. moderate centrist if he’s too …unusual… in other ways.

  44. 44
    shortstop says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Wow, pretty much every word you said in that entire comment.

  45. 45

    @trollhattan: Poor Booker has spent most of his life running for First Black President. Now he’s trolling Obama for doing it too soon and too much, the wrong way–not being bipartisan enough.

  46. 46
    shortstop says:

    @burnspbesq: This is rather more supportive of G&T’s point than of yours.

  47. 47
    Roger Moore says:

    @mistermix:

    Booker would support Open Source

    Which says it all. People who really care support Free Software, not Open Source. Open Source is for pansies who aren’t willing to commit to software freedom as a matter of principle, which sounds exactly like Cory B00ker.

  48. 48
    Peregrinus says:

    @askew:

    My issues with Booker are mostly on his educational policy views, but as Midnight Marauder said at #14, it’s worse than just “nice things about Wall Street” – though I agree that he was probably shoring up putative support from future constituents.

    @Paul in KY:

    Perhaps. I went looking for NRA endorsements and found that there are a couple policies that sometimes help Dems, like incumbent reendorsement as long as their score is better or the same as the challenger. I don’t remember if they were ever used in favor of Dems, though.

  49. 49
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @burnspbesq: I’ll defer to those who know more about him and NJ politcis (but don’t you have some pretty credible Dem reps?). I have nothing against Lautenberg, i just find it odd that at his age, having already retired once (no?), he wants to cling to office. And I can’t imagine his age won’t be an issue.

  50. 50
    JoyfulA says:

    @shortstop: Three of them in PA were in primaries. In one, the leftier (not NRA funded) beat the funded blue dog incumbent. The other two funded Democrats were incumbents facing each other, and the winner lost to the Republican, who I think may have been an incumbent, too.

  51. 51
    shortstop says:

    Withdrawn.

  52. 52
    Robert says:

    It’s really not true. I remember meeting a few Wall Street/big business types when I performed at NJPAC in Newark. They’ll go there for entertainment and not much else.

  53. 53
    Console says:

    I’m tempted to side with Booker, because the guy (like Obama) can give really complicated and nuanced answers to things when he wants to present himself as the adult in the room. But he’s being too cute here. We aren’t at the point where the problem with guns in america is overzealous persecution of gun owners. Quite the opposite. So you aren’t going to look like the grownup in the room on this. You’re going to look like an opportunistic asshole.

    The thing I do agree with him on though… Handguns kill “urban” people, assault weapons drive mass media stories. Consequence, one of these gets all the regulation and attention. And trying to talk reality about the weird focus on the assault weapons ban places you outside of the gun control side. I know it’s not an either-or proposition, but it sort of makes you exasperated with the way america works. It’s a culture gripe rather then a policy one though.

  54. 54
    Joey Maloney says:

    Meh. I cut him some slack. He’s got national ambitions but he’s still young and he hasn’t quite figured out how to play to a national audience yet, and the fine art of subtlety when it comes to tailoring your presentation to your audience. But I bet he can learn, unlike some White Horses we know.

  55. 55
    Reformed Panty Sniffer says:

    Booker, if elected to the Senate, will soon become known as the Black Joe Lieberman and a fixture on Sunday morning village shows. Most people in NJ know that Booker is an unrepetant self promoter. Lautenberg may be staying in just to stick it to him and/or make him damaged goods if Booker beats him in primary (not a sure thing).

  56. 56
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    B00ker’s constituents who may work on Wall Street take the train in and work at barely-making it salaries. No campaign contributions there. The Wall Street people from NJ who matter wouldn’t set foot in Newark city limits without an armed escort.

    I dunno — I had a friend who was living in Newark when he worked at Cantor Fitzgerald in the WTC (luckily for him he had moved to another job before 9/11). This was in the 1990s. At least back then, Newark seemed to have a decent share of young financial-sector types in loft apartments.

  57. 57
    Roger Moore says:

    @shortstop:

    Was anyone on that list in a true battle with a Repub (rather than a case of big business/a special interest buying influence from a certain winner)?

    Neither of the two in California was. Joe Baca was running against another Democrat (who was heavily backed by Michael Bloomberg) thanks to our new jungle primary system, and Dennis Cardoza decided to retire rather than run for reelection.

  58. 58
    RSR says:

    Guns, too, huh? Right there in the centrist dem column along with Ed Reform and “leave Wall Street aloooone”

    Color me unsurprised.

  59. 59
    Ben Franklin says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    Dang! As much as $5k? Dem Bastids.

  60. 60
    Console says:

    @Reformed Panty Sniffer:

    Self promoter? Meh, he’s a politician. Although I suppose Brick City can go back to the old school style where self promotion means lining your pockets and trying to avoid federal prison time, instead of tweeting.

  61. 61
    Maude says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:
    Burnsie doesn’t live in Nj. I think he lived here during the Pleistocene era.
    I haven’t heard that Lautenberg is running again. He may have announced, but it still a bit early for that.
    Gun safety is important in NJ.
    The two sitting US Senators are strongly for gun safety. They have both been reelected with that position being well known.

  62. 62
    El Cid says:

    I did see Cory Booker on one of those shows clarify that the violent crimes and murders in his city were not being committed by law-abiding gun-owners, which as stated sounded to me like an interesting statement which was true by definition.

    Maybe he can stick in an extra phrase in there.

  63. 63
    ricky says:

    So excuse me for asking, but since it is the reporter who says Booker has taken a centrist position on gun control isn’t it incumbent on the reporter to describe what is “centrist” about his opinion? I read his article. I can’t for the life of me find out what position Booker has taken much less determine whether it is centrist.

    Oh, and Booker missed a few rallies. mistermix was there
    I take it. Otherwise he too was dodging. Just like all of us who missed taking our assault weapons to the midst of any of America’s many wars over the past say, half century, were dodging.

  64. 64
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Lots of things were different 20 years ago.

  65. 65
    Jim C. says:

    I have yet to see Booker take a position on anything that I’ve genuinely liked.

    Not. One. Time.

    Now, granted, as an Idaho democrat I probably don’t see as much news coverage of him as some of you folks in other parts of the country, but every time I personally have seen him make news it’s for doing something exceedingly di.c.kish.

    Like being a “centrist” on gun control or stabbing Obama in the back when he’s supposed to be a surrogate and the like.

    In other words, he’s striking me as an unprincipled, selfish, self-involved prick. Why is he considered to be the frontrunner for a Senate seat in a very liberal state?

    Can someone tell me a little bit about his strong liberal accomplishments or some of his more progressive stances on issues? In other words, can someone tell me, as someone who has only seen negative things about him, why I as a liberal should actually like this guy?

  66. 66
    Ben Cisco says:

    @shortstop: Kissell played at being a GOPer, and got spanked by a real one.

  67. 67
    Console says:

    @Jim C.:

    this is his gun control position:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....46911.html

    also enlightening:

    http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/c.....um=twitter

    honestly, the only thing I don’t like about Cory Booker that he falls for the education reform nonsense. But that’s about it.

  68. 68
    Ed in NJ says:

    Having experienced the Star-Ledger form of “reporting” for years now, I wouldn’t trust a word they print. This is a dying paper that resorts to sensationalism to sell what few papers they can still peddle to those too old or stupid to know how to get their news elsewhere.

  69. 69
    Sad But True says:

    @askew: so let him go on being a great mayor. Thing is, he clearly wants to move on to bigger things, and he seems to be far more willing than most to sell his soul to do it. Supposedly he’s gonna primary Lautenberg. Lautenberg is like 90 years old, but replacing him with Booker would be a significant step backwards. Booker will be the next Charles Schumer – one is plenty. And his designs on the presidency will only make him more insufferable. I don’t want the next Democrat star to be someone interested in appealing to Morning Joe. I want someone who’s ahead of the game, not behind it. There are plenty of other potential stars out there. No doubt Booker is going to be the one hogging their limelight, because no doubt the powers that be in NYC want it that way.

    Booker is talented. He’s also fake. He’s no sellout waiting to happen – he sold out long ago and is merely being packaged as the real deal. A Manchurian candidate if there ever was one.

  70. 70
    Donut says:

    rural Jersey votes

    Whut? Was that snark?

    There’s, like, over 1,000 people per square mile in New Jersey. Is there such a thing as a rural Jersey voter?

    I have no doubt Booker is willing to say different things to different audiences, depending on what he thinks each audience wants to hear.

    Isn’t this a feature for politicians, not a bug?

  71. 71
    El Caganer says:

    @Donut: Despite the population density, there are a good number of farmers in south Jersey.

  72. 72
    AxelFoley says:

    @Schlemizel:

    Your faith is stronger than mine then.

    Seriously? No one’s gonna touch this one? Schlemizel left it wide open.

    All the damn sic-fi geeks we got here and no one took a swing at this one.

    SMH

  73. 73
    Anon says:

    @Donut: And NW (Warren, Sussex and Hunterdon counties) New Jersey has tons of horse farms and is wine country too.

    This map is useful. My home town in Passaic county has a population density of less than 350/mile^2, to give you an idea of the variation in even a local area (Passaic county avg is 2,700/mi^2).

  74. 74
    AxelFoley says:

    @Reformed Panty Sniffer:

    LOL, this nym caught me off guard. Good thing I wasn’t drinking anything near my screen.

  75. 75
    Donut says:

    @El Caganer:
    @Anon:

    Probably should have explained myself better.

    Are there enough rural votes in NJ that pandering to these folks is actually worthwhile? Enough to swing an election one way or the other?

Comments are closed.