Freshman state Rep. Charles Booker ended weeks of conjecture this past Sunday by declaring he will officially enter the race to challenge U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in 2020.
What We Know:
- The first signs of a possible run by Booker, came shortly after a rocky rollout by presumed Democratic front-runner Amy McGrath. Many progressives were unsettled when the candidate called out McConnell for not doing enough in aiding President Donald Trump in keeping his pledge to “drain the swamp” in Washington.
- Booker will waive running for a second term in the Kentucky House of Representatives, where he quickly became an outspoken opponent of conservative legislation, in favor of a long-shot bid to unseat McConnell. Until then, Booker would first have to defeat former Marine Corps pilot Amy McGrath in the May Democratic primary.
- During the announcement event, which was held at Manhattan on Broadway in Louisville, several speakers touched on Booker’s background growing up in poverty and strong faith. The turnout included a noticeable group of college-aged voters who touted Booker’s support over certain policies. Some of which included concerns over climate change and medicare.
- Booker’s response to the past failure in toppling McConnell added fuel to the fire by claiming Democrats are too busy “dancing around” the GOP leader. He explained how the party’s nominee in 2020 must take the fight to McConnell, while also exciting the Democratic base.
Booker is the first African American to launch a bond bid for U.S. Senate in Kentucky, a state which hundreds of people of color were lynched in the late 19th century. Whether it’s been on the campaign trail or the floor of the House, Booker continues to state this history is not lost with him.