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April 19, 2019

N.J. Sen. Cory Booker, fellow Democrats receive racist death threats from Florida man

John Kless was arrested Friday after defending the Charlottesville attack and disparaging Rep. Ilhan Omar

Threats Racism
Cory Booker, file photo Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Sen. Cory Booker speaks at the Camden Rising concert at the BB&T Pavilion in 2016.

A Florida man was arrested Friday for threatening to kill New Jersey U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Detroit, and U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell of California.

John Kless of Broward County was arrested after calling the politicians’ Washington, D.C., offices on April 16 and leaving threatening voicemails, according to the Miami New Times.

In all three messages, Kless also threatened U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, who came under fire this week when President Donald Trump took comments she made about the September 11 attacks out of context and attacked her on Twitter.

Kless’ voicemail to Booker, a candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 2020 presidential election, was expressly racist on top of threatening death.

Via the New Times:

“Kless repeatedly used the N-word to refer to Booker and called him a ‘monkey.’ [Kless added] that he wanted to kill black men like the senator. ‘You're a f***ing disgrace,’ Kless allegedly said. ‘We need to kill all you motherf***ers man, every f***ing one of you, man.’ He added that the terror attack in Charlottesville, Virginia — in which a white supremacist ran over progressive protester Heather Heyer with a car — just killed ‘one f***ing person.’ He added that Booker should tell his ‘colleague with the towel on her head to shut up about 9/11.’”

“You’re going to be the motherf***ers that pay,” Kless told Booker. “Don’t worry, you government officials will be in the graves where you belong.”

Federal investigators also found Kless had left similar messages at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office, according to the New Times.

In a tweet sent Friday morning, Booker said Trump is someone “who chooses who to protect & support based on racism & bigotry.”

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