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  Why Do Liberals Hate Cory Booker?
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ContributorMonsieur 
Last EditedMonsieur  Aug 28, 2013 12:10pm
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CategoryAnalysis
AuthorMolly Ball
News DateFriday, August 23, 2013 06:00:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionCory Booker is not yet a senator, but many on the left have already made up their minds that the onetime Democratic wunderkind is a sellout.

The 44-year-old two-term mayor of Newark won the New Jersey Democratic primary by 39 points last week, all but guaranteeing he will take his place in Washington in a couple of months. (One recent poll had him up 16 points on his little-known Republican opponent.) Yet Booker's triumph was greeted not by cheers but by scathing takedowns in two prominent liberal publications. Salon called him "an avatar of the wealthy elite, a camera hog, and a political cipher"; The New Republic declared Booker only interested in "agitating for the cause of himself" and doing the bidding of "the moneyed classes." Booker has faced a steady drumbeat of criticism from sites like Daily Kos, where a contributor asserted last year that he "would actually be much more at home in the Republican Party."* Booker's team has grown all too familiar with the rap that he is "some sort of Manchurian candidate for the right," as his campaign spokesman, Kevin Griffis, put it to me with a sigh.

What's curious about the criticism is there's very little substance to it. It's not based on Booker's record as mayor or the policies he espouses. Most of his policy stances are conventional liberal ones: pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, in favor of raising taxes on the rich and increasing government spending on welfare and infrastructure programs. As he told Salon's Matt Taylor last month, "There's nothing in that realm of progressive politics where you won't find me."

What Booker's critics mainly take issue with are his associations, his persona, and unprovable allegations about his "worldview."
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