Cory Booker Fires up Crowd at DNC

In short speech, Newark mayor hits on themes of fairness, restoring prosperity.

(Please see our video of an analysis of the speech filmed immediately afterwards.)

Newark Mayor Cory Booker gave a brief but rousing speech at the Democratic National Convention Tuesday, touching on topics that included economic inequality, education and breaks for small business. His words brought the audience to its feet. 

“This is our American mission. These are the dreams of our fathers and our mothers,” Booker told the crowd gathered in Charlotte, N.C. for day one of the convention.

The convention ends Thursday when President Barack Obama formally accepts the nomination. 

Booker, the only member of the New Jersey delegation tasked with giving a major speech at the convention, seemed in fine form despite suffering from a “bum ankle” he’d injured earlier Tuesday, the mayor said on Twitter.

Unlike Gov. Chris Christie, who gave a major primetime address during last week’s Republican National Convention, Booker’s speech lasted a little more than 10 minutes and aired at 6 p.m., before the major television networks began their broadcasts. 

Booker, who served as co-chair of the committee that wrote the Democratic Party platform for 2012, introduced the platform during his speech, aiming his rhetoric squarely at voters with average incomes.

“This platform is a clear choice between economic pathways, forward or back, inclusion or exclusion, grow together as a nation or be a country of savage disparities and favor the fortunate few over the greatest driving force in the economy: a large and robust middle class,” Booker said.

Booker also said Democrats favor balanced budgets, but were dismissive of the Republican idea that tax cuts for the wealthy would stimulate economic growth.

“Our platform calls for significant cuts in federal spending, calls for a balanced deficit reduction plan where everyone from elected officials to the wealthy to the super-wealthy pay their fair share,” Booker said.

In what seemed to be an almost deliberate rebuke of Republican nominee Mitt Romney -- who was sharply criticized for failing to mention America’s ongoing war in Afghanistan during his acceptance speech last week -- Booker spotlighted the 11-year-old conflict.

With U.S. soldiers risking everything overseas, “being asked to pay your fair share isn’t class warfare. It’s patriotism,” a line that drew some of the heaviest applause during Booker’s speech as well as choruses of “USA!”

Booker also said the platform favors assistance for small business, which he said has received 18 tax cuts under Obama, investment in infrastructure and a pledge that US citizens who “play by the rules” regardless of “who they choose to love” or what religion they follow have the right to employment that pays enough for decent housing, retirement and medical care.

Booker’s speech was largely well-received in the Twitter-verse, where the social-media-savvy mayor has 1.2 million followers.

“You completely knocked it out of the park!” one fan said, while Newark Councilman Ron Rice, a sometime opponent of Booker’s, enthused that the crowd spontaneously took to its feet Tuesday, unlike during Christie’s address, when Christie had to “exhort” people to rise.

“Guess ideas matter,” Rice’s tweet also read.

Lia Eustachewich contributed to this report.

Dr.Doom October 08, 2012 at 11:32 AM
No I'm not tee party activist, thanks for asking. Glad you liked the name. Picking up my information from more then one source. Patriot - planning to add anything informative to the thread?
Dr.Doom October 09, 2012 at 01:14 AM
spot on - if you replace in the first sentence "this administration" with "possible ROMNEY-RYAN administration" and in the last sentence add "not" before ROMNEY-RYAN
Patriot October 10, 2012 at 01:48 AM
The 7.8% Unemployment Numbers recently reported are quite deceptive. The Top 25 economists state that the true Unemployment numbers are more like 14% minimum. Mostly part time jobs were used in the calculation. Also people that could not find jobs anywhere and left the workforce were not counted in the cakculation. Many people that had their Extended unemployment payments run out were then allowed by the Obama adminstration to receive Disability insurance payments and they were not in the calculation either. It is also interesting to note that Employers are now hiring only part timers so they do not have to pay for Obamacare. So the number of new jobs numbers is also suspect because 2 people are now hired for 1 prior person employed (each work perhaps 20 hours per week). Any employee who works 50 hours must be covered by Obamacare and the employers would be bankrupt very quickly so they found a way around it. And of couse those really wonderful Green Jobs that Obama counts.....ones like mopping the floor, sweeping the floor, digging a hole, putting in a cement sidewalk leading to nowhere beside a highway are in the Jobs filled numbers. The recent campaign donations to Obama are being investigated because they were made over the Internet from Foreign/illegal sources that did not provide complete zip code information.
VietNam Vet October 10, 2012 at 03:33 AM
There are a number of people saying the same thing here. For the numbers to fall that fast and that much, the economy would have to be growing at a 5% rate, and we all know that it is not. So as always this jerk and his admin is lying, but what else is new.
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