At a private fundraiser, Joe Biden praised segregationist Democrat senators, and now he’s demanding rival Cory Booker apologize to him.

Hello, White Privilege.

The AP reports:

The controversy began at a New York fundraiser Tuesday when Biden pointed to long-dead segregationist senators James Eastland of Mississippi and Herman Talmadge of Georgia to argue that Washington functioned more smoothly a generation ago than under today’s “broken” hyperpartisanship.

“We didn’t agree on much of anything,” Biden said of the two men, who were prominent senators when Biden was elected in 1972. Biden described Talmadge as “one of the meanest guys I ever knew” and said Eastland called him “son,” though not “boy,” a reference to the racist way many whites addressed black men at the time.

Yet even in that Senate, Biden said, “At least there was some civility. We got things done.”

“You don’t joke about calling black men ‘boys,’” Booker said in a statement, according to The Daily Beast. “Men like James O. Eastland used words like that, and the racist policies that accompanied them, to perpetuate white supremacy and strip black Americans of our very humanity.”

Booker then went after Biden.

“I have to tell Vice President Biden, as someone I respect, that he is wrong for using his relationships with Eastland and Talmadge as examples of how to bring our country together,” he said in the statement. “And frankly, I’m disappointed that he hasn’t issued an immediate apology for the pain his words are dredging up for many Americans. He should.”

Biden then went after Booker.

“They know better,” he said of his Democrat rivals.

“Are you going to apologize?” a reporter asked.

“Apologize for what? Cory should apologize. He knows better,” Biden said. “There’s not a racist bone in my body.”

MSNBC identified Eastland and Talmadge as Republicans, when they were, in fact, Democrats.

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