WASHINGTON – If Sen. Cory Booker isn't careful, his testosterone could get him in trouble with the Secret Service.
The New Jersey Democrat told NBC's "Late Night" host Seth Meyers on Monday that sometimes his male hormones drive him to "feel like punching" President Donald Trump after Meyers asked him about remaining civil and polite in the current political climate and in light of Trump's confrontational style.
Booker, who is one of 25 Democrats seeking their party's presidential nomination, said that at a recent campaign event in Iowa, a former college football player put his arm around him and said, "Dude, I want you to punch Donald Trump in the face."
"And I stop in my tracks and I go, 'Dude, that's a felony, man,'" Booker said.
But Booker said Trump is someone who "hurts you" and that in response, his testosterone sometimes makes him want to strike the president, "which would be bad for this elderly, out-of-shape man that he is, if I did that."
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"This physically weak specimen," Booker added, as the audience clapped and cheered.
"That's his tactics. And you don't beat a bully like him fighting him on his tactics, on his terms, using his turf," Booker explained. "He's the body shamer. He's the guy that tries to drag people in the gutter.
"What we need from our next leader, especially after the time of moral vandalism that we're in right now, is we need a leader who's not going to call us to the worst of who we are, but who is going to call us to the best of who we are."
Like most of the 2020 Democratic field, Booker has been fiercely critical of Trump. He has called for the opening of impeachment proceedings against the president in light of the results of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. And after Trump's call for four congresswomen of color to "go back" to their countries of origin, he said the president is "worse than a racist."
"He is actually using racist tropes and racial language for political gains, trying to use this as a weapon to divide our nation against itself," Booker said Sunday on CNN, calling the 2020 election "a referendum on the heart and soul of our country."
Booker is not the only one of the Democratic candidates who has indicated a desire to physically fight Trump.
In October 2016, then-Vice President Joe Biden said he wished they were back in high school so he could take Trump "behind the gym."
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Cory Booker: I 'feel like punching' Trump but those are 'his tactics'