Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) is ready to end his presidential campaign unless he can raise $1.7 million from his supporters by Sept. 30, which marks the closing of the third fundraising quarter.
“The next 10 days will determine whether Cory Booker can stay in this race and compete to win the nomination,” wrote Addisu Demissie, who works as Booker’s presidential campaign manager, in a memo released to supporters and staff members.
“We need to maximize support from our current donor base, and we need to seal the deal with supporters who like Cory but have been waiting to contribute because of an assumption that they can wait until later,” Demissie added.
Demissie made it abundantly clear that the campaign was in panic mode, and unless Booker can gain momentum quickly, he would likely miss the threshold needed to qualify for the next Democratic presidential debate and bow out from the race.
“I want to be clear: This isn’t an end-of-quarter stunt or another one of those memos from a campaign trying to spin the press,” he wrote. “This is a real, unvarnished look under the hood of our operation at a level of transparency unprecedented in modern presidential campaigns.”
Booker even validated the concerns by addressing the turmoil within his campaign on Saturday morning.
“It’s an unusual move for a campaign like ours to be this transparent, but there can be no courage without vulnerability. I want people to see where we are and understand that we have a pathway to victory, but I can’t walk it alone,” he said.
Booker hoped to usurp the “hope and change” mantle from former President Barack Obama in 2020, but times have changed within the Democratic Party. The radical socialist wing of the Party has taken hold, and Booker – who once sold himself as a reformer who would work with Republicans to solve problems facing America – has failed to capture their support in a crowded field.
For example, Booker once appeared at a Devos-funded debate 19 years ago where he unequivocally endorsed school choice in a contentious debate.
“I applaud Charter Schools. I know they are working,” Booker explained to a hostile audience. His relationship with the Devos family grew from there, before he did a convenient about-face.
He has reversed his stance completely on the campaign trail, saying that “the evidence has become clear that vouchers do not help — and in fact, hurt — the cause of educational equity.”
Booker’s perceived inauthenticity has resulted in him receiving a great deal of criticism from both sides of the aisle.
“Now that it is politically inconvenient, he has distanced himself from the issue and those who helped launch his political career,” said William E. Oberndorf, who was chairman of the American Education Reform Council when Booker and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos both served on the board.
“Cory once told me that his father used to say to him, ‘Never forget the girl who brought you to the dance.’ I can only conclude that Cory not only forgot one of the girls who brought him to the dance, he missed his . . . moment to stand up for an issue he always said he believed in,” Oberndorf added.
Booker will likely be leaving the dance soon, and joining losers such as New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and California Congressman Eric Swalwell who have already bowed out of the presidential race.
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