2020 hopeful Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) claimed during Wednesday night’s Democratic debate that Hillary Clinton “lost the state of Michigan” because Russians suppressed the African-American vote.
“This is one of those times where we’re not staring at the truth and calling it out. This is the case for the Democratic Party: the truth will set us free. We lost the state of Michigan because everybody from Republicans to Russians were targeting the suppression of African-American voters,” Booker claimed.
Cory Booker: "We lost the state of Michigan because everybody from Republicans to Russians were targeting the suppression of African American voters" #DemDebate pic.twitter.com/Zq86pSiZ5q
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) August 1, 2019
“We need to say that. If the African American vote had been like it was four years earlier, we would have won the state of Michigan,” he continued. “We need to have a campaign that is ready for what is coming: an all-out assault, especially on the most valuable voter group in our coalition—in fact, the highest-performing voter group in our coalition, which is black women.”
“And so, I will be a person that tries to fight against voter suppression that can activate and engage the kind of voters and coalitions that are going to win states like Michigan and Pennsylvania and Wisconsin,” he concluded, receiving applause from the audience.
Booker doubled down on his claims on Twitter, saying again that Republicans were involved in an effort to suppress African-American voters.
“In 2020, we have to turn out black voters, especially black women,” he said.
This is one of those times where we’re not staring at the truth and calling it out: In 2016, everyone from Republicans to Russians was trying to suppress African American voters. In 2020, we have to turn out Black voters, especially Black women. #DemDebate
— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) August 1, 2019
There is no evidence to support his claim that Republicans attempted to suppress black voters in the 2016 election. He was likely referring to the Russian-backed Internet Research Agency’s online propaganda efforts that targeted African Americans.
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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of Battleground State News, The Ohio Star, and The Minnesota Sun. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Cory Booker” by Cory Booker. Background Photo “Debate Stage” by Gage Skidmore. CC BY-SA 2.0.