Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.) launched his presidential bid Friday — the 10th Democrat so far to officially announce a 2020 White House run.
Booker’s announcement was made to coincide with the beginning of Black History Month.
Revealing his candidacy via a video posted to YouTube and Twitter, the 49-year-old former mayor of Newark said:
“I believe that we can build a country where no one is forgotten, no one is left behind, where we see the faces of our leaders on television and feel pride, not shame. Together, we will channel our common pain back into our common purpose. Together, America, we will rise.”
The video focuses on the struggles Booker’s family endured when he was a child, and how he's the only senator who lives in a low-income, inner-city community.
In an email sent to supporters Friday morning, Booker drew on the spirit of the civil rights movement.
“The history of our nation is defined by collective action; by interwoven destinies of slaves and abolitionists; of those born here and those who chose America as home; of those who took up arms to defend our country, and those who linked arms to challenge and change it,” he said.
Booker’s campaign rollout will see him speak to three national radio hosts Friday morning, all anchored by black and Latino hosts. His first TV appearance will be on “The View,” with his mother in the audience.
The senator joins an already crowded field that's dominated by women, including Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
Analysts predict the Democrats will field their biggest ever slate of candidates for 2020, with another 20 people actively considering seeking the nomination to run against Donald Trump — including former Vice President Joe Biden.
The Hill reported Thursday that Booker has been canvassing for support from members of the Congressional Black Caucus, one of the most influential groups on Capitol Hill.
But Booker is already playing catch up with Harris, who announced her candidacy on Jan. 21 and has already made an appearance alongside House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn in South Carolina, one of the key presidential voting states.
Booker himself spoke in South Carolina last month on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, as did Bernie Sanders — another potential competitor for the Democratic nomination.
Cover Image: Cory Booker speaks at the Prayer Breakfast for the 48th Annual Congressional Black Caucus Foundation on September 15, 2018, in Washington, D.. (Earl Gibson III/Getty Images)