Booker: If Obama was running for a third term, 'I wouldn't be running'

Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerJayapal hits back at Biden on marijuana 'prohibition' Poll: Biden holds 20-point lead in South Carolina Fox News anchor apologizes for saying Booker dropped out of 2020 race MORE (D-N.J.) on Thursday said he would not be running for president if former President Obama was running for a third term. 

"Heck, if [Obama] was running for president for a third term, I wouldn't be running," Booker told CNN.

"The reality is we have a situation right now where the president is doing things to this country that are perverting our very values and ideals, and talking about what our plans would be, different from the previous president; different from the current president, is not a bad thing," he continued. 

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Booker was responding to a question about why many of the Democratic candidates during the previous night's debate appeared to criticize a number of policies under the Obama administration, including his signature health care law, the Affordable Care Act. 

"He [Obama] is our statesmen," Booker said. "He ain't perfect. Nobody's ever pulled that off. Nobody has ever pulled that off." 

"I'm sure if Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaThe Memo: Centrists change tone of Democratic race Political purity tests are for losers Deportations lower under Trump administration than Obama: report MORE was sitting here — and I hope he's sleeping this morning — he would tell you, 'I've made some mistakes,'" he continued. 

"Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpMost Americans break with Trump on Ukraine, but just 45 percent think he should be removed: poll Judge orders Democrats to give notice if they request Trump's NY tax returns Trump's doctor issues letter addressing 'speculation' about visit to Walter Reed MORE is a guy that my Republican colleagues can't even criticize when he's preaching racism," he added, before continuing to praise Obama. "We are having an honest conversation about an administration that was incredible. I would take him back." 

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenMost Americans break with Trump on Ukraine, but just 45 percent think he should be removed: poll Democrats release two new transcripts ahead of next public impeachment hearings Press: Ukraine's not the only outrage MORE has touted his professional relationship with Obama on the campaign trail, but has said he asked Obama not to endorse him in the race. Booker called his fellow candidate out on that during Wednesday's Democratic debate. 

“Mr. Vice President, you can’t have it both ways,” Booker said. “You invoke President Obama more than anybody in this campaign. You can’t do it when it’s convenient and then dodge it when it’s not.”