New Jersey Senator and democratic presidential candidate Cory Booker was a guest on The View last Friday, and Meghan McCain did not go easy on him.
Booker finally made his 2020 presidential bid official last week with an ad that emphasized his dedication to low-income communities and bipartisan unity. For his first televised interview during his campaign, he joined the co-hosts of ABC's The View, discussing his platforms, his prospects and his history as a U.S. Senator. As the leading Republican voice on the show, Meghan McCain had quite a few questions for Booker.
McCain allowed Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar to get some time with booker before lobbing questions his way. He listed some accomplishments and goals, then said that he did not "want it to be defined by beating Republicans but by uniting Americans.” At that point, McCain jumped in.
“How do you convince people, especially on the left, that you’re authentic and that you’re not a phony?” McCain asked Booker.
“You can’t speak to ‘authenticity,’” the senator said. “You’ve just got to be who you are.”
McCain dug deeper into the question, suggesting Booker had a reputation for "grand-standing" in the senate, and pointing out that he had been parodies on Saturday Night Live.
“Sarah Palin was parodied on SNL and it turned into a reality, so there is a power in that as well," McCain said, relating Booker's bid to a prominent figure in her own party.
“SNL parodies a lot of people, Sarah Palin’s the only one who really got burnt," Behar added.
“When I think of you now, I think of ‘I am Spartacus’ and I don’t know if that’s the best reflection of you," McCain persisted.
Booker's response was firm. He suggested that the moment she was referring to — when Booker openly broke senate rules during the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings to prove a point — had been "twisted." To him, he said, it was one of his "prouder moments," but its portrayal in the media had been taken out of context as part of a growing "tear-down culture."
“That’s the problem with our culture,” he went on. “We have people getting more and more ratings by tearing down that other people. That’s not how I’m going to run this campaign. If you're tired of that bitterness, that trash talking, that trolling, that politics that is a race to the bottom in our country, then don’t support me. Because I’m not in this race to tear people down. I'm in this race to try to build our nation up.”0comments
Booker's early appearance on The View speaks to how important the show has become for political voices in the U.S. The show features some of the hottest debates in the country played out in a microcosm on a day to day basis. Other issues Booker discussed were the crowded field of Democratic hopefuls running for president, Americans' view of the economy and political cynicism around the country.
The View airs on week days at 11 a.m. ET on ABC.