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Cory Booker is doing damage control. The Newark N.J. mayor caused a stir for criticizing Obama’s campaign attacks over Mitt Romney’s work at Bain Capital, and attempted to change the tide Monday (May 21) first via YouTube, and later by going on MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show. The controversy stems from Booker’s appearance on Meet the Press over the weekend, in which he seemingly played both sides of the fence. Based on siding with both Obama and Romney, then negatively critiquing what he called issues in the “private equity,” Booker now claims to have been used by Republicans. As one of what he calls the “earliest supporters” of the then first-term senator’s presidential bid, Booker admitted to being “frustrated” by the effect of his words against Obama.

Among the GOP’s efforts to exploit his views was the creation of the “I Stand With Cory Booker” petition. “Here they are plucking soundbytes out of that interview to manipulate them in a cynical manner,” he said. “To use them for their own purposes … I’m very upset that I’m being used by the GOP this way.”

Although Booker has had a storied relationship with the media, he has since emerged as a notable Democratic figure. Last month, he garnered praise for helping a woman to safety from her burning apartment, and in the past has done more deeds to help the public like shoveling snow from an elderly man’s driveway.


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