Booker: Trump is 'worse than a racist'

Booker: Trump is 'worse than a racist'
© Getty Images

Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerStakes high for Collins in coronavirus relief standoff It's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process Booker introduces bill to create 'DemocracyCorps' for elections MORE (D-N.J.) called President TrumpDonald John TrumpMulvaney: 'We've overreacted a little bit' to coronavirus Former CBS News president: Most major cable news outlets 'unrelentingly liberal' in 'fear and loathing' of Trump An old man like me should be made more vulnerable to death by COVID-19 MORE “worse than a racist” on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday, comparing him to segregationist Alabama governor and presidential candidate George Wallace (D).

“This is a guy who is worse than a racist.  He is actually using racist tropes and racial language for political gains, trying to use this as a weapon to divide our nation against itself,” Booker told guest host Dana BashDana BashDemings 'concerned' over theme park openings in Florida Demings hits Trump for campaigning off Biden 'you ain't black' comments New Jersey governor warns of educator, health-care worker layoffs without federal aid MORE.




Booker made the remark one week after a series of tweets from President Trump telling four progressive minority congresswomen to “go back” to other countries ignited a firestorm of criticism. All four congresswomen targeted by the tweets are U.S. citizens.

The New Jersey senator invoked Wallace last week as well after a chant of “send her back” erupted at a Trump campaign rally in reference to Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarOvernight Defense: Pentagon memo warns pandemic could go until summer 2021 | Watchdog finds Taliban violence is high despite US deal | Progressive Dems demand defense cuts Progressives demand defense budget cuts amid coronavirus pandemic Ocasio-Cortez endorses progressive Democrat in Georgia congressional primary MORE (D-Minn.).

“My parents, my mom watched in black and white on TV, George Wallace with accusations of communism, the same language, the same bigotry, the same hate that we see now," Booker said on MSNBC Wednesday.

Booker told CNN that he viewed Trump and his rhetoric as another iteration of similar movements and rhetoric throughout American history.

“We have seen it with the Know Nothing Party, which was trying to stop Irish and German immigrants.  We have seen it with McCarthyism. We have a demagogue, fear-mongering person who's using race to divide,” he told Bash.

The 2020 election, Booker said, was not a referendum on Trump himself, but rather “it's actually a referendum on the heart and soul of our country. Who are we going to be and who are we going to be to each other?”

Booker made a similar comment on CBS' "Face the Nation" Sunday, saying Trump is "using race like a weapon."