Booker OK with calling out Trump administration officials in a way that 'leads with love'

Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerO’Rourke heading to Wisconsin amid 2020 speculation 2020 Dems slam Trump's plan to declare national emergency NBC, CNN to host first two Democratic presidential primary debates MORE (D-N.J.) on Monday urged protesters of President TrumpDonald John TrumpBill Kristol resurfaces video of Pence calling Obama executive action on immigration a 'profound mistake' ACLU says planned national emergency declaration is 'clear abuse of presidential power' O'Rourke says he'd 'absolutely' take down border wall near El Paso if he could MORE to confront administration officials — but with respect — amid an ongoing debate over civility in politics.

“If I saw an administrator out and about, there’s nothing wrong with confronting that person. But not to lead with love and to do it in a way that is more reflective of the values we are trying to reject in our country is not acceptable to me,” Booker said on MSNBC. 

“I worry in our country right now that we’re descending to a hatred of American hating American. That is not going to solve our problems,” he added. 

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Booker’s comments come amid a growing discussion over the recent treatment of Trump administration officials.

A restaurant in Lexington, Va., refused to serve White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Friday, citing her defense of Trump’s policies banning transgender people from the military and separating migrant families at the border.

That followed separate incidents last week in which protesters confronted White House aide Stephen Miller and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine - Will there be any last-minute shutdown drama? FEMA head resigns 'El Chapo' found guilty on all charges MORE while they dined at Mexican restaurants in Washington, D.C.

Rep. Maxine Walters (D-Calif.) escalated tensions when she encouraged supporters to harass Trump administration officials in public places.

"For these members of his Cabinet who remain and try to defend him they're not going to be able to go to a restaurant, they're not going to be able to stop at a gas station, they're not going to be able to shop at a department store, the people are going to turn on them, they're going to protest, they're going to absolutely harass them until they decide that they're going to tell the president 'no I can't hang with you, this is wrong this is unconscionable and we can't keep doing this to children,’” Waters said Saturday.

The president has seized on the controversy, attacking Waters as “low IQ” and using his personal account to call the Red Hen dirty.

Booker on Monday encouraged Americans to protest Trump administration policies, specifically the separation of migrant families at the border. However, he appeared to reject Waters’s rhetoric.

“We’ve got to get to a point in our country where we can talk to each other, where we are all seeking a more beloved community,” Booker said. “And some of those tactics that people are advocating for to me don’t reflect that spirit.”