Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker broke out their Spanish during night one of the first Democratic primary debate on Wednesday, drawing mixed responses from viewers following along on Twitter.
Booker gave O’Rourke a meme-worthy look when O’Rourke answered his first question of the debate in both English and Spanish (see below) when he was asked if he would support a 70% tax rate on those Americans who make over $10 million per year.
— The Doctor of Philosophy (@zackzack8888) June 27, 2019
O’Rourke began in English with: “This economy has got to work for everyone and right now we know that it isn’t. It’s going to take all of us coming together to make sure that it does.”
He then switched to Spanish, getting what some viewers are calling “side-eye” from Booker for the decision. It didn’t take long for shots of Booker’s face to flood Twitter and become arguably the night’s most meme-able moment.
Later in the debate — which was broadcast by NBC, MSNBC and Telemundo — the New Jersey senator broke out in Spanish himself during one of his answers, prompting tweets from viewers about the two politicians both using the foreign language.
“Omgggg I don’t know how to say that but like omg yes dueling Spanish speaking politicians omgggg that’s why Booker was so maddddd,” “Queer Eye” star Jonathan Van Ness tweeted.
“Everyone making fun of Beto and Booker for broken Spanish when the President *only* speaks in broken English,” another user tweeted.
On Thursday, 10 other Democratic hopefuls, including Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg, take the stage for a second night of debate.
See below for just a small portion of the reactions to O’Rourke and Booker’s dueling Spanish. Readers can find TheWrap’s biggest takeaways from the debate here.
Omgggg I don’t know how to say that but like omg yes dueling Spanish speaking politicians omgggg that’s why Booker was so maddddd
— Jonathan Van Ness (@jvn) June 27, 2019
— Eric Gonzaba (@EGonzaba) June 27, 2019
omg Booker’s face when Beto busted out the Spanish pic.twitter.com/O4oY4HowWK
— andi zeisler (@andizeisler) June 27, 2019
— Gay Mathematician (@GayMathMagician) June 27, 2019
— Full Frontal (@FullFrontalSamB) June 27, 2019
Moderator: “Mr. O’Rourke, what do you think about this specific tax plan?”
Beto: “Well you see I know Spanish.”
Moderator: “Yeah but the tax plan…”
Beto: “Hola como estas”#DemocraticDebate
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) June 27, 2019
beto and booker the immigrant
speaking broken community that
spanish at the has waited 30 yrs
debate when asked y solo quiere
abt immigration papeles pic.twitter.com/a8hKQcgSKl
— Movimiento Cosecha (@CosechaMovement) June 27, 2019
CORY BOOKER SPEAKING SPANISH IS FUCKING HILARIOUS. OVER-ENUNCIATING AND MAKING CRAZY EYES.
— Saeed Jones (@theferocity) June 27, 2019
beto orourke and cory booker pic.twitter.com/FeHnyGaEej
— hannah (@hanturnerr) June 27, 2019
beto o’rourke speaking
10th grade spanish me pic.twitter.com/2p3ijg83mQ
— erin chack (@ErinChack) June 27, 2019
Cory Booker's side eye at Beto O'Rourke speaking Spanish is priceless.#DemDebate
— Charlotte Clymer????️???? (@cmclymer) June 27, 2019