Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) on Wednesday fueled speculation that he could be Hillary Clinton's vice presidential pick with an all-out assault on Donald Trump at a campaign event in New Jersey.I have some doubts about the explosive power of those "rhetorical bombs," but attacks on Trump are always welcome.
“The issues we hear Donald Trump talking about are just so contrary to who we are as a people,” the first-term senator said at a Clinton rally in Newark.
“They are an affront and an insult to our higher angels and our best selves,” Booker added. "We have Abraham Lincoln saying, ‘with malice towards none’ and Donald Trump saying ‘with hate for all.’ ”
... One of the key jobs of a vice presidential candidate is to be an attack dog, and Booker embraced that task with relish, throwing a series of rhetorical bombs at the presumptive Republican nominee.
“We have Donald Trump standing up as one of the greatest fear-mongers in this nation’s history. He’s trying to make us afraid of each other.”
However, it's being pointed out that Booker wasn't always quite so hostile to Trump, or at least to members of his family. In fact, back in 2013 he was very tight with members of Trump's family:
Ivanka Trump, the daughter of Republican real estate mogul Donald Trump, will host a fundraiser for Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s Senate bid next Wednesday, a campaign source familiar with the event said.Jared Kushner is a fat cat, but he's is not a dyed-in-the-wool Republican, and he's been tight with Booker for a while:
The event, with a suggested contribution of $5,200 per person, will be held at Ivanka Trump’s home on Park Avenue in Manhattan.
She and her husband, Jared Kushner, had bundled $41,000 for Booker’s Senate campaign as of May.
Kushner, CEO of the real estate firm Kushner Companies and a son of Charles Kushner, formerly a major donor and power player in New Jersey Democratic politics, first backed Booker when he was mayor of Newark. From their political congruity, the two men quickly developed a personal friendship.Well, it's not a wedding photo, though I'm sure one of those will show up eventually, and it was at an LGBT rights event, and Sean Eldridge was an unsuccessful Democratic congressional candidate a while back. But still:
Booker attended Kushner’s star-studded wedding in 2009 to Ivanka Trump, held at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. In 2011, Booker and Kushner were among the honorary hosts for a Freedom to Marry reception at the Manhattan home of Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes and his then-fiancé Sean Eldridge, another friend of Kushner’s; there, Eldridge, Booker, Kushner and Ivanka Trump posed together for a photo, grinning broadly.
There's been some friction in this relationship, reportedly in part because Booker was on the correct side of an issue:
For months, however, Kushner and Booker have not spoken, according to a source close to Kushner. For one, Kushner, an orthodox Jew and a supporter of pro-Israel causes, was “really disappointed” when Booker supported the president’s Iran deal, the source said.Booker acknowledges that he's been chummy with the Trump family:
But there is another awkward hang-up: Kushner is now advising the presumptive Republican nominee for president, his father-in-law, Donald Trump, whose political rhetoric, style and policy stances could not depart more sharply from Booker’s.
"I know Donald Trump, I've met him, I know his family," Booker said. "I have love, and friendship, and affection for his family members. But I'm going to work very hard to ensure that he is not our president."Now, I'm not (to use Tom Hilton's term) a "puritopian." But still -- shouldn't there be someone on this ticket who's never partied with a Trump? Just for appearances' sake? Is that too much to ask?
"Ivanka is a woman of great grace and kindness and has been a good friend to me," he added.