Cory BookerU.S. Senator
Cory Booker is serving his second term as U.S. Senator from New Jersey. Previously, he was mayor of Newark, New Jersey.
Unions and Workers
Supports raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour.
Supports union rights and the Fight for $15 movement, and joined fast food workers on strike in Charleston.
Joined striking airport workers in Miami in June.
Supports universal health coverage and has co-sponsored both a federal public option that would co-exist with employer-sponsored and other private insurance, as well as Medicare for All legislation that would create a single-payer system.
Supports a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants and expanded protections for DREAMers and people with Temporary Protected Status (TPS). He has released a detailed plan of things that he will do without waiting for Congress to act, including “virtually eliminating” immigration detention, phasing out private prisons, ending abusive detention conditions, deprioritizing criminal prosecutions of migrants who don’t pose a safety risk, restoring dignity and due process to asylum applicants, increasing refugee admissions, reforming the immigration enforcement agencies, and addressing the root causes of migration.
Supports the Green New Deal, which seeks new investment in clean-energy infrastructure and policies to directly address climate change.
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Booker’s climate plan would authorize the Department of Agriculture to hire workers and expand resources for farmers to promote reduction in carbon emissions. The plan would also restore millions of acres of coastal wetlands and plant 15 billion trees.
Speaking the Charleston, South Carolina church where a white supremacist gunman killed nine black worshipers in 2015, Booker said the El Paso shooting was “sowed by those who spoke the same words the El Paso murderer did, warning of an ‘invasion,’’ a word President Trump has used to describe migrants coming to the United States.
After approximately 60 campaign workers voted to form a union, Booker’s campaign promised to support the efforts and pledged to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement with their staff.
At a forum with AFSCME members, Booker said that, as president, he would prioritize public schools despite his past record of supporting charter schools when he served as mayor of Newark, New Jersey and that he would fight back against Republican schemes to privatize education.
At the Democratic debate, Booker criticized Biden’s record on criminal justice saying, “This is a crisis in our country because we have treated issues of race and poverty, mental health and addiction with locking people up and not lifting them up. And Mr. Vice President has said that since the 1970s, every major crime bill—every crime bill, major and minor—has had his name on it.”
Senator Booker, together with Senators Kamala D. Harris and Marco Rubio, introduced legislation to establish the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys which would investigate potential civil rights violations affecting black males and study the disparities they experience in education, criminal justice, health, employment, fatherhood, mentorship and violence.
Booker’s plan would expand access to long-term care services and pay caregivers at least $15 an hour.
Booker announced a plan to reform the immigration system, including stronger civil detention standards for facilities operated by the Department of Homeland Security, ending contracts with private prison facilities and county or local prisons over three years, and restoring protections granted to young immigrants known as Dreamers under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
After traveling to Mexico to help a group of migrant women apply for asylum, Booker remarked on the terrible conditions the women are enduring, adding, “It shouldn’t take a member of Congress to help people cross into our country,’ he said. ‘Seeking asylum is a legal right.’”
He cited “egregious and appalling abuses” and the use of solitary confinement for detainees held in jails nationwide.
Booker announced an affordable-housing plan centered on a new tax credit for renters. The plan also pushes for regulatory changes to address the nationwide lack of affordable housing.
Booker introduced the Maximizing Outcomes for Moms through Medicaid Improvement and Enhancement of Services (MOMMIES) Act, which would extend Medicaid coverage for postpartum women to a year, up from the current level of two months. In a statement announcing the bill, Booker said, “By expanding Medicaid coverage for pregnant women, we can begin to stem the rising tide of maternal mortality and close the egregious racial gaps that exist in maternal and infant health outcomes.”
“I stand by supporting Medicare for All. But I’m also that pragmatist that when I’m chief executive of the country... I’m going to find the immediate things that we can do.” Booker also rejected the idea that his plan would immediately eliminate private insurance, saying, “We’re not going to pull health insurance from 150 million Americans who have private insurance that like their insurance.”