Now that the midterm elections are over and Democrats will assume control of the U.S. House of Representatives in January, many are turning their eyes to the 2020 presidential race. New Jersey Senator Cory Booker is among the list of challengers mulling over a bid for the White House, but with one striking difference: he’s single.
While many have insinuated that the 49-year-old is gay, Booker addressed the rumors in a recent interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer when asked about the insinuations.
“I’m heterosexual,” he told the Philadephia Inquirer. “Every candidate should run on their authentic self, tell their truth, and more importantly, or most importantly, talk about their vision for the country.”
There have only been two unmarried American presidents to be elected in the past–James Buchanan, the 15th president, and Grover Cleveland, the country’s 22nd and 24th president. If Booker makes it through the gauntlet to win in 2020, he would become the single man in the White House, and the first bachelor elected to America’s highest office since 1884.
But does it even matter if the nation’s chief executive is single? Booker doesn’t think so.
“Clearly the norms of family relationships have been changed dramatically as you’ve seen people across this country being elected to offices with all different kinds of family situations, including the president who has had three spouses,” he reiterated. “So I think a lot of that conventional thought on that doesn’t apply.”
In terms of whether or not voters are ready for a bachelor in the White House, Booker said he hopes people judge him on his record and abilities, not his relationship status.
“I’m going to run on who I am, whether that’s running for reelection [to the Senate] or running for president,” he explained. “I’ve always trusted the voters enough to evaluate me on the content of my character, quality of my ideas, and my ability to do the job.”
It’s no secret Booker wants to run for president, but the New Jersey Senator told reporters he’s still considering his options.
“I have a pause during the holidays which is going to be a really great time to meet with family and friends and really start to put some focus on whether to run for president or not,” Booker told the Inquirer.
I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.