Booker, Cruz Enjoy 'Intellectual Discussion' Over Dinner

Thursday, 20 Mar 2014 03:09 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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New Jersey Democratic Sen. Cory Booker jokes that Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz didn't serve up any "Green Eggs and Ham" during a recent dinner meeting, but instead, the two diametrically opposite lawmakers spent three hours looking for — and finding — some good common ground.

"There was no filibusters going on," Booker told "Good Day New York" on the local Fox affiliate Thursday, referring to Cruz's marathon speech last year in which he quoted Dr. Seuss.

"We had probably one of the best constitutional law discussions since I got out of law school. And I loved it, we just had a great intellectual discussion."

New York News

Booker said he plans to sit down eventually with every Republican in the Senate, and his dinner with Cruz last week is one of many such meetings he has planned.

Twitter user Zack Stoller  saw Cruz and Booker together at the restaurant and tweeted a picture.
Cruz, noting the publicity behind his dinner with Booker, tweeted the new senator a message the following day.
Finding common ground on dinner with Cruz wasn't easy, said Booker.

"First of all, he’s a Texas meat-eating cowboy, I’m a Jersey boy, vegetarian, so choosing the restaurant alone [wasn't easy]," Booker said.

After their intellectual discussion, the two went on to talk about "trends in the economy that have nothing to do with partisanship that are just bad."

The dinner at Bistro Bis, a French restaurant located near Capitol Hill, was expected to last for about an hour but went on for three hours while the two also talked about wage stagnation and youth unemployment, "what the facts were and then started trying to find ways we might get solutions," said Booker.

Booker, who was elected to the Senate in October, has also already met with GOP Sens. John McCain of Arizona, and Orrin Hatch of Utah, and has been working with South Carolina Republican Sen. Tim Scott, the only other African American member of the Senate.

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