Charles Booker, a ‘Black Guy From the Hood,’ Wants Rand Paul’s Seat

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Getty
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Getty

Former Kentucky Rep. Charles Booker does not like Sen. Rand Paul. Not just because Booker is vying for Paul’s Senate seat in this week’s election, but also because he doesn’t feel like Paul represents Kentucky.

“My ancestors were lynched in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. You can’t hide anymore, Rand Paul,” the Democrat tells host Molly Jong-Fast in the latest episode of The New Abnormal about why he’s over the GOP senator.

His run, Booker says, “is giving us the chance to take the fight to him directly and, and call him out.”

That said, he makes clear that the race is bigger than just trying to get a “crappy” guy out of office.

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“We’re inspiring people to say, ‘Look, it’s not just about how crappy this guy is. He’s a joke, but this is about us. You know, it’s about our future, and we’re going to get him out of the way so we can do the work,’” he adds.

Booker has said in the past he’s using the Stacey Abrams model to turn Kentucky blue, as she did in Georgia, and explains his logic to Molly.

“People didn’t give Georgia a shot in hell. You know, they were laughing at the idea of seeing two Senate seats, let alone one. And so a lot of that work is because of what Stacey has done and, you know, Kentucky’s different. Sure, we’re unique. But the thing that holds true is that we are a people that are desperate for change,” he says.

So what’s his plan of attack? To start, it’s by leveling up with the people, even Trump voters. “It really requires the audacity to say, ‘OK, I’m a young Black guy from the hood, but I’m going to go into the hills in Appalachia and say, ‘Hey, our lives matter. I’m rationing my insulin. Or I’ve had to do that. You’ve had to do that.’ Let’s fight together.”

Plus! Serial TNA guest and The Nation columnist Jeet Heer kicks off the episode by comparing some Americans’ resistance to vaccines to people and governments in other countries and, well, it’s pretty divided here. Which also indicates that the climate change fight is going to get even uglier.

Tucker Carlson Is Doing It for the Fish Sticks

“The way Republicans have acted towards the vaccine is likely how they’re going to act about climate, which is they’re willing to die to prove a point,” says Molly.

Then, Sam Wang, who is part of the Princeton Gerrymandering Project team, breaks down the Virginia race and how likely it is for former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe to defeat Trump-backed Republican Glenn Youngkin.

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