Dec 4, 2019 - Politics & Policy

Booker: "There's more billionaires in the race than there are black people"

Sen. Cory Booker

Cory Booker. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Sen. Cory Booker described his initial reaction to Sen. Kamala Harris's exit from the 2020 presidential race on Buzzfeed's AM2DM show as anger since there are now more billionaires in the race than black people.

Why it matters: Harris, the first top-tier candidate to drop out, told her supporters that she doesn't have the financial resources to continue her pursuit of the presidency and isn't a billionaire, so cannot fund her own campaign. Former hedge fund manager Tom Steyer and ex-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg have received a barrage of criticism for buying their way into the 2020 race.

What Booker is saying:

"The first reaction was just anger. Kamala, you know before she was a presidential candidate or a senator, she was my friend. She was my sister. And the way her experiences in this race have just been disappointing to me.
"Frankly, to see her not letting the voters of Iowa decide her destiny as opposed to what we see now is just unfortunate.
"And I’ve seen the vile and the anger from my family members to people in the Congressional back caucus to leaders of color across this country. They don’t understand how we got to the point now that there’s more billionaires in the 2020 race than there are black people. At a time when the very theme of the Democratic Party is that billionaires and millionaires shouldn't shape the rules to benefit them."

Reality check:

  • There are currently two African Americans in the Democratic primary race: Booker and former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.
  • There are currently two billionaire Democrats running: Bloomberg and Steyer.

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