Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) reportedly told people attending a Joe Biden fundraiser in Detroit Monday night that he had heard Majority Whip Jim Clyburn refer to Biden as an “honorary Black man” at a recent Congressional Black Caucus meeting.
Booker reportedly relayed the story as he continued to trump for Biden in the rustbelt state, according to a tweet from Bloomberg reporter Jennifer Epstein. The fundraiser, in which Biden also spoke, was held at the Detroit Athletic Club and more than 350 people were reportedly in attendance. Tickets went from $1,000 to $2,800, according to Bloomberg News.
So far, no video has surfaced from the fundraiser.
Years ago, Black people would joke that former President Bill Clinton, appearing with his smooth saxophone and sunglasses on “The Arsenio Hall Show,” was the first Black president. In a 2019 news analysis, the The New York Times called these type of statements “a myth that proximity to blackness immunizes white people from doing racist things.”
If Rep. Clyburn (D-South Carolina) did utter those words about Biden at the recent CBC meeting, many on social media want to know what Biden has done to earn that honorary Black man distinction.
“No more cook out invites, no more honorary inductions into blackness,” tweeted Juan Trill’iams.
“This is depressing, tbh,” tweeted Bobbi Dobbs.
“I recommend he flex this status by incorporating use of the n-word in his speeches,” suggested DKNYC.
@LT0525 pulled up an old tweet from newscaster, Joy Reid, reminding people that “Joy Reid said the same thing 8 years ago.”
Others pointed out that even though Biden was former President Barack Obama’s vice president, he wrote the 1994 crime bill that disproportionately sent Black people to jail so there’s no way he could ever been an honorary Black man.
People on social media continued to criticize Booker for backing Biden when he had, just a few months ago, questioned Biden’s record on race.