Sen. Cory Booker (D., N.J.) on Friday likened Democrat's "bold" effort to implement the Green New Deal to fighting Nazis during World War II and landing on the moon in 1969.
Booker, who launched his presidential campaign last week, is traveling through Iowa to speak to voters about various issues, including the Green New Deal. The nonbinding resolution was introduced by freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) and veteran Sen. Ed Markey (Mass.) on Thursday.
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"We have to deal with this. Our planet is in peril and we need to be bold. It’s one of the reasons I signed on to the resolution; I co-sponsored the resolution for the Green New Deal," Booker said at a campaign event in Mason City, Iowa. "There’s a lot of people that are now blowing back on the Green New Deal. They’re going, ‘Oh, it’s impractical, oh it’s too expensive, oh it’s all of this.’ If we used to govern our dreams that way, we would have never gone to the moon."
"We need to be bold again in America. We need to have dreams that other people say are impossible. We need to push the bounds of human potential, because that is our history," Booker added.
He argued the United States must lead on climate change as it has in the past when the planet was in peril or when Nazi and totalitarian regimes wrecked havoc.
"We came forward," Booker said. "Who came forward to save the planet or continents from financial ruin? We came forward with the Marshall Plan."
Markey and Ocasio-Cortez, a self-described democratic socialist, released a 14-page outline for the Green New Deal resolution on Thursday. The framers of the deal call for every building in the United States to be upgraded or replaced for "state-of-the-art energy efficiency." The plan also aims to "overhaul transportation"; its ultimate goal is to replace "every combustion-engine vehicle" in the country, which would include planes and automobiles.
Booker joined several other presidential hopefuls in declaring their support for the Green New Deal, including those who have formed an exploratory committee or announced their candidacy: Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.), Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), and Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.). Sens. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) and Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.), who is expected to announce her decision to run on Sunday, also signaled support for the resolution.
Booker defended the plan by invoking the aspirational lessons he learned in his youth.
"My parents taught me, ‘reach for the moon, reach for the stars, and even if you come up short, at least you're going to be hovering above the ground – you'll be soaring, young man," he said during the Mason City event.