Before 10 a.m., Sen. Cory Booker had already hit three delegate meetings, exhorting Democrats at each stop to coalesce after a splintering primary contest and defeat Donald Trump in the presidential election.
By 10 p.m., the New Jersey senator was delivering a similar message on stage at the Democratic National Convention, speaking in a prime spot to boost Hillary Clinton alongside a roster of stars from first lady Michelle Obama to Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren as Democrats worked to pitch unity while party faithful were still divided over who should leave Philadelphia the nominee.
“I respect and value the ideals of rugged individualism and self-reliance. But rugged individualism didn’t defeat the British, it didn’t get us to the moon, build our nation’s highways or map the human genome. We did that together,” Booker said in his convention speech. “This is the high call of patriotism. Patriotism is love of country. But you can’t love your country without loving your countrymen and countrywomen. We don’t always have to agree, but we must empower each other, we must find the common ground, we must build bridges across our differences to pursue the common good.”
A finalist for vice president last week, Booker’s prime-time speech capped a whirlwind day advocating for Clinton’s presidency in delegate meetings, media interviews and television appearances that will likely mirror what he plans to do for Clinton between now and the November election.
Booker pressed for the party to galvanize and called for those disaffected by what has been a splintering primary campaign to engage this fall to deliver the Democratic ticket to the White House.
As Clinton waited to accept the party’s nomination for president, supporters of her primary rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, marched the streets of Philadelphia and in convention spaces railing against her and decrying the bias against Sanders by Democratic Party officials disclosed in a trove of emails leaked over the weekend.
But the party must bridge its divisions and focus on defeating Republican nominee Trump, who Booker earlier in the day called “a real threat” who “has been tearing down America.” And he made the case that Clinton, despite the damning findings of an FBI investigation into her use of private email as secretary of State, is the best qualified to lead and unify the nation. He cited her positions on the wage gap, paid family leave, college affordability and criminal justice reform as reasons she has earned the party’s nomination.
“Hillary Clinton knows what Donald Trump betrays time and again in this campaign: that we are not a zero-sum nation, it is not you or me, it is not one American against another. It is you and I, together, interdependent, interconnected with one single interwoven American destiny,” Booker said in his convention speech.
Source: USA Today | Dustin Racioppi