(WASHINGTON) — Newly minted Sen. Cory Booker turned to the words of a home state legend Monday, quoting Bruce Springsteen in his maiden speech on the Senate floor.
“When times are tough, as the great New Jersey poet sings, ‘We take care of our own,’” said Booker, D-N.J.
Booker used Springsteen’s lyrics to urge his colleagues to extend unemployment insurance, which the Senate failed to do last month.
“For millions of Americans suffering amidst horrible economic conditions, not of their own making, who play by the rules, who are looking for work, who are struggling, who are suffering, we have more than 50 years of history of responding and extending unemployment insurance, but not now,” Booker said.
“This is why unemployment insurance is critical. It is America answering the call to help people in crisis not of their own making,” he said.
Booker, who was sworn into the Senate in October, said he has “not surrendered to the cynicism” surrounding Congress and that he remains determined to address the nation’s problems.
“Three months in, almost to the day, I’m inspired by the work of this body. I’ve not surrendered to the cynicism about it. I’m inspired by the remarkable people who sit around me right now,” Booker said. “This is a great institution and I now have an even more fervent, relentless belief that together we can address our common cause and the common challenges afflicting our national strength.”
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio
Stephen Collinson, CNN
Nate Eaton, EastIdahoNews.com
Euan McKirdy, Bryony Jones and Barry Neild, CNN