Presidential Forerunners UPDATE 4

Rowan Munson, Reporter

Less than a year from now, the 2020 Presidential election ends and an archaic process of deciding the winner begins. The United States’ executive branch restarts from scratch and the future continues forward.

The Sehome seniors, and some juniors, will be able to vote for this election. It is important to vote, but an under-informed voter is dangerous. In the coming publications, the Tide will break down the candidates in order, by a series of background and hot topic viewpoints. These include age, past jobs, college and post-grad degrees, their beliefs and/or plans on guns, climate change, birth control/healthcare, economy, equality, boarder/immigration issues, and things against the candidates.

This is not an in-depth presentation of each person. It is a bare, lacking idea of what they stand for and who they hope to be in the White House. Please use this to spark more research. If something or someone interests you, look it up and follow it through.

Other Websites with Information broken down about the candidates’ views:

  • Candidates’ Views on Issues (Politico)
  • On the Issues
  • Inside Climate News
  • Meet the Major Presidential Candidates in 2020 (Time)

Democrats:

Michael Bennet

AGE: 54 years old

PAST JOBS: 2010 Bennet was elected as senator of Colorado with backing from Former President Obama. When he started his six-year term in January 2011, Obama said, “[Bennet] perfectly reflects the qualities of the ruggedly independent state he has been chosen to serve.” He won his second term in 2016 with the highest majority for a democratic candidate ever in the state.

DEGREE: BA in history from Wesleyan and Juris Doctor from Yale

ON GUNS: In 2010, he earned a C+ from the National Rifle Association for mixed support on the Second Amendment and, after of the 2017 Las Vegas shooting, he has demanded universal background checks.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Bennet plans to be net neutral throughout America “no later” than 2050.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: He believes abortion should be unrestricted and birth control easily accessible; “We also need to do more to ensure people have access to lifesaving drugs they need” (ontheissues.org).

ON ECONOMY: He believes “we need an economy that works for everyone, not just the wealthy few. Our democracy cannot be sustained otherwise” (Michael Bennet’s twitter). Bennet wants to raise the minimum wage to 12 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: Bennet is an original supporter of the Equality Act (May 17, 2019, bill prohibiting discrimination against a person for their gender, sexuality, or the medical choices they have made) and supports same-sex marriage; he is undecided on the paying reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: in 2019, Bennet joined a bill against deportation of deployed military members’ families and helped introduce the Protecting Sensitive Locations Act on specific ICE limitations; he has demanded Trump reunite immigrants with their children

AGAINST HIM: he has been accused of “finger-to-the-wind” politics, reported by the Denver Post, or the policy of changing his mind when most peoples’ option changes; he is also towards the bottom of the poles and did not make it into the most recent debates.

Joe Biden

AGE: 76 years old

PAST JOBS: he is most famously known for being the vice-president for both terms of President Obama; he was elected into the Senate from Delaware and served two terms; he unsuccessfully ran for democratic nominee in 1988 and 2008;

DEGREE: BA university of Delaware with a double major in history and political science; Juris Doctor from Syracuse university of law

ON GUNS: as for gun laws and enforcement, Bidden calls for a buyback program to be implemented for assault rifles and universal background checks

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: he is credited with the first environmental bill in congress, the Global Climate Protection Act of 1986 and believes “[denying climate change] is like denying gravity now… the willing suspension of disbelief can only be sustained for so long” (March 2015). His plans would have the US carbon neutral by 2050.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: he wants to guarantee everyone health insurance; according to the New Republic “Biden’s plan would increase subsidies on the Affordable Care Act marketplace and lower the premium limit on marketplace plans from 9.86 to 8.5 percent of annual income. As Julián Castro noted, to Biden’s headshaking, Biden’s own website says it would leave three percent of Americans uninsured, or more than 10 million people.”

ON ECONOMY: his cornerstone is reviving the middle class, but unlike his democratic peers, he doesn’t believe that the 1% are to blame; he believes in raising the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: Biden has declared LGBTQ+ issues to be the most important focus on the coming years (“it is wrong and it is immoral what [trump] is doing” he said (apnews), and he has stated that passing the Equality Act would be one of the first actions he would accomplish in office if he won; he supports studying reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: Biden has said that it is a “crime” to cross the border illegally; he tweeted that children should not be set back with their parents to a land they’ve never lived in and that those actions were “un-American.”

OTHER: He led the passing of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act (1994) and the Violence Against Women Act (1994). In 2002, he voted in favor of resolution authorizing in Iraq but in 2007, he voted against US troop surges within the region. After becoming vice president with Obama in 2008, his focuses were on countering the Great Recession and moving to pull military from Iraq (2011). He is well known for work with Republicans and help in solving bipartisan issues, including the taxation deadlocks of 2011.

AGINST HIM: It is important to point out that he has a mixed voting record, as seen by missing a key vote in the Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act, considered to some as the “strongest” climate bill to ever pass through Congress (Inside Climate News reported). He has been caught up in multiple cases of backlash from democratic support due to racially ignorant comments (“poor kids are just as talented as white kids” and “[low income parents should] play the radio, make sure you have the television  – excuse me, make sure you have the record player on…” incidents) and inappropriate interactions with women (in respondence to the fore-mentioned physical contact, Biden has said that he is a “tactile politician” and understands why this would have affected his past)

Mike Bloomberg

AGE: 77 years old

PAST JOBS: Bloomberg worked alongside Thomas Secunda, Duncan MacMillan, and Charles Zeger to develop technology that processed market data in real time. They were called Market Master Terminals and later renamed Bloomberg Terminals. In 1984, the company behind them was launched. As of 2018, the company (Bloomberg LP) had earned roughly 10 billion dollars. In 2002, Bloomberg became the 108th Major of New York. He won reelections in 2005 and 2009.

DEGREE: BS in electrical engineering from Johns Hopkins University and a Master in Business Administration from Harvard University

ON GUNS: He supports a ban on assault weapons and favors universal background checks. The system he has proposed includes permits for all new gun buyers, crack downs on unlicensed gun shows, and police notifications about who has been prohibited from holding firearms. When he was mayor in 2003, Bloomberg oversaw a sting operation attacking illegal guns from gun shows. He supports “red flag screening” which bars people with domestic violence backgrounds or who have been prohibited from flight.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: According to insideclimatenew.org, Bloomberg has had substantially more experience with climate issues than the other democratic candidates, apart from Former Vice President Biden. He has worked as a United Nations Climate envoy and chaired the international organization of cities committed to climate action.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: Bloomberg would expand current healthcare coverage but is opposed to Medicare for All. He supports linking drug prices to international standards. In an interview with Politico, he explained that the American healthcare system has become a “disease care system” which focuses on solving the problems an individual, instead of refocusing on promoting a healthy lifestyle from the start.

ON ECONOMY: One of his main points for an economic plan is to increase job opportunities where he believes the Trump plan has short changed smaller towns. His plan is titled the ‘All-In Economy’ agenda. Other policies he supports are collective bargaining rights for gig workers (people who are paid by temporary assignments, such as uber drivers) and more training opportunities for students in community colleges. He supports raising minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: Bloomberg LP is creating the Gender Equality Index (GEI) for tracking equal opportunity within the workplace. His cooperation has won “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality” by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation in 2017, 2018, and 2019. He helped lead New York’s fight for marriage equality as mayor, which became law in 2011.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: He argues for the need of pathways to citizenship, but he also supports a stronger boarder control, including airport checks. Bloomberg also advocates for foreign aid to immigrants fleeing as refugees.

AGAINST HIM: Some people have been critical of his late arrival to the democratic campaign for president, and furthermore the extreme wealth he is using to support this has been called out by Bernie – “Don’t think you can buy an election.” Similar responses have come at Steyer.

Steve Bullock

AGE: 53 years old

PAST JOBS: From 2009 to 2013, he worked as Attorney General of Montana. In January of 2013, Bullock became governor of Montana and from July 2018 to July 2019, he was a chair of the National Governors association.

DEGREE: BA in politics, philosophy, and economics from Claremont and JD, with honors, from Columbia Law School

ON GUNS: Bullock supports an assault rifle ban. He would implement universal background checks. He discusses his options on guns through two stories – his son’s first buck kill and his nephew’s murder on a playground at Montana Elementary, where both boys were eleven; he says, as a hunter and firearm owner, he knows “no real hunter needs a weapon of war” and “they don’t want a terrorist or domestic abuser or a violent felon to have a gun, period” (Bullock told RealClearPolitics).

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: He hopes to be carbon neutral “by 2040 or even earlier” according to his twitter account. In the past he has worked in adapting the “Blueprint for Montana’s Energy Future” (2016).

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: He is against med-care for all. Instead, he calls for a rehaul of the American Medicaid foundations, creating insurance for the country, and continuing to allow private options. He is not clear on abortion, though he did veto a bill that barred doctors from late term actions. Bullock wants to build on the American Counseling Association foundation.

ON ECONOMY: Bullock has criticized current President, Donald Trump, on his trade war with China; he believes in fewer tariffs and pro-business for job increase. He believes in raising the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: He is the only democratic candidate that doesn’t support or hope to study reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans. He has signed a bill to prohibit discrimination of state employees, sub-contractors, and contractors due to gender or sexual identity.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: He believes in “citizenship for dreamers” or the pathway for undocumented immigrants to become citizens of the United States. He backs funding the wall if experts support its ability. He doesn’t plan on changing the policy on illegal entry to the US

OTHER: His campaign is based on taking on “dark money” in politics.

AGAINST HIM: He is far from the top candidate and has not been included in any democratic debates.

Pete Buttigieg

AGE: 37 years old

PAST JOBS: From 2004 to 2005, Buttigieg worked in DC as the Cohen Group’s Conference Director. He has been involved with the Truman National Security and, in 2014, he was appointed to the Board of Advisors.

DEGREE: He graduated from Harvard with a BA in history and literature and later Pembroke, Oxford, with a Rhodes Scholarship

ON GUNS: Buttigieg supports a voluntary buy-back system and universal background checks. He is in favor of a gun licensing program, where gun owners would be required to declare the weapons they own.

ON CLIMATE: He advocates for a plan to pay farmers for adopting climate-friendly options. Buttigieg supports nuclear power and would end new oil and gas leases on federally owned land. Within his climate plans, carbon emissions would be taxed. He has proposed an achievable Green New Deal that would make the economy net-zero by 2050 while increasing the job market with new green jobs.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: He is pro-choice and would try to repeal the Hyde Amendment, which bans federal support of abortion services of all but extreme circumstances. After the Human Life Protection Act passed in May of 2019, Buttigieg said the bill was “ignoring science, criminalizing abortion, and punishing women.” He opposes med care for all but wants to expand overall coverage. In relation to drug prices, Buttigieg supports negotiating for Medicare and promoting generics.

ON ECONOMY: Buttigieg has stated that automation is the major cause of decreased manufacturing jobs and speaks to working with labor unions to improve work environments. He believes a constitutional amendment to protect democracy in the face of corruption within politics, like Bullock’s views. He would raise the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: Pete Buttigieg has been married to Chasten Buttigieg since June of 2018. In July 2019, he shared his Douglass Plan to address systematic racism within the United States. He supports passing New Federal Voting Rights Act to allow easier voting access. He opposes the transgender military ban imposed under Trump. He would support studying reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: While supporting Citizenship for Dreamers, he also believes in removing the statute of illegal entry.

OTHER: Between 2009 and 2017, he served as a part of the US navy as a lieutenant in Afghanistan. According to Buttigieg, he joined the Navy due to the class disparity within those who went into the military and those that didn’t have to.

AGAINST HIM: Unlike similarly high-polling Democratic candidates, Buttigieg is against Medicare for all. Both Sanders and Warren support the idea. He is also tied for youngest dem with Gabbard. He also has struck some controversy with the African American voters, due in part to his Douglass plan, which focused on resurrection of the city and overlooked many housing developments of predominantly Latino and African American inhabitance throughout the city.

John Delaney

AGE: 56 years old

PAST JOBS: Delaney co-founded two businesses and won Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2004. In 2010, he was CEO of CapitalSource, which supplies senior loans. He has been Maryland’s representative in the House from 2013 to 2019.

DEGREE: BS from Columbia University and a JD from Georgetown University Law Center

ON GUNS: He supports universal background checks and barring assault rifles from entering the streets. Delaney cosponsored the Assault Weapons Ban Act, which would target military equipped weapons such as the AR-15 and remove high-capacity magazines from the market. He would also prohibit the use of accessories that increase firing capacity such as bump stocks and trigger cranks.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Delaney has been quoted saying the Green New Deal is “as realistic as Trump saying that Mexico is going to pay for the wall.” Along with all the democratic candidates, he would rejoin the Paris Climate Accords. He supports a federal carbon tax that would aim at reducing US carbon emissions 90% by 2050.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: Delaney supports abortion and doesn’t agree with the ban on federal funding for set medical access, along with making sure that religious organizations cannot restrict employees birth control coverage. He would move to sustain the Affordable Healthcare Act while Congress worked on passing a new system – one remaining Medicare based. He opposes Medicare for All and would impose a public option without eliminating private insurance.

ON ECONOMY: Delaney voted against the 2017 Republican tax-cut bill. The bill has passed and is now law. Passing voting history implies that he is against removing the estate tax. He supports removing the high tariffs on specific foreign companies. He would raise minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: Delaney would ban conversion therapy and discrimination to LGBTQ people within the workplace and housing. He also supports studying reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: He supports a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, although he also agrees with increased funding towards border control and physical boundaries. Delaney would raise the refugee resettlement cap from its current limit.

OTHER: He is widely considered by INSIDER polling to be one of the most right-sided democrats in the race.

AGAINST HIM: Like prior candidates, he is within extremely low polling range. He is lacking in political background.

Tulsi Gabbard

AGE: 38 years old

PAST JOBS: She was in the Hawaii House of Representatives from 2002 to 2004. After her second middle east deployment, she ran and won a seat on the Honolulu city council where she stayed between 2011 and 2012. From 2013 onwards, Gabbard has been in the House of Representatives for Hawaii.

DEGREE: BS in business administration from Hawaii Pacific University

ON GUNS: She supports a ban on assault weapons and favors universal background checks. In the past, she has worked on passing bills that would close gun-show loopholes and banning easy access to assault rifles. According to ontheissues, Gabbard is regarded to be ‘sensible’ on gun control, including her plans to ban tourists from obtaining guns.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: She was an early supporter of the Green New Deal. Gabbard would ban fracking and slowly moving from fossil fuel to renewable energy. Her OFF act outlines the moving between these sources, but it gives no specifics on the cost of carbon tax. The US “should be leading by example [in the fight against climate change],” she explained. Gabbard plans on shutting down existing nuclear power reactors, an opinion that only two other candidates (Williamson and Sanders) share. She would aim to have the US carbon neutral by 2035.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: She would move to have few limitations on abortion. Working with Medicare to lower drug prices and improving promotion of generics are also included in her healthcare plans.

ON ECONOMY: A primary ideal Gabbard has upheld throughout the campaign is the ending of tax breaks for corporations who use ‘off shoring’ techniques, i.e. moving sham headquarter locations to avoid US taxations. She supports raising the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: “When we deny LGBTQ+ people basic rights that exist for every American, we are denying their humanity,” Gabbard twitted. Within the topic, she supports working to stop bigotry and violence against other Americans due to race, religion, or identity. She would study reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: Gabbard supports Citizenship for Dreamers and the executive actions for legalizing current situations meanwhile. The later part would work as a backup if Congress stalls or will not pass the idea of the Dreamers plan.

OTHER: Gabbard has served in the Hawaii Army National Guard and, in 2004, she was deployed for a 12-month tour of Iraq. Her rank was Major.

AGAINST HER: There is some speculation to Gabbard’s extreme support within Russian media. Under her father’s business, she worked to promote conversion therapy and measures against same-sex couples in Hawaii. Currently, she has stated publicly that she ‘regrets’ such actions. Some are disgruntled by her slightly isolationist views for America and the world.

Amy Klobuchar

AGE: 59 years old

PAST JOBS: She worked as a corporate lawyer before getting elected as Hennepin County attorney in 1998 and 2002. Klobuchar ran for the Senate first in 2006 and has won consequential terms in 2012 and 2018. She was the first female Senator from Minnesota.

DEGREE: BA from Yale University and JD from Chicago University

ON GUNS: In alignment with most democratic candidates, she would ban assault weapons and impose universal background checks. Klobuchar has supported stronger gun laws since working as a court attorney. This is largely backed by the population of Minnesota, where 74 percent of gun owners within the state agree with the imposition of universal background checks, including gun show loopholes (medium.com). If elected, she would raise the age requirement to purchase military-style assault weapons and move to ban their selling all together.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Klobuchar supports nuclear power and paying farmers to adopt climate-friendly actions within their work. In 2007, she introduced a carbon tracking program that would later work to impose a carbon tax. Another bill she introduced worked to add more green energy credit which was later adopted into the Economic Stabilization Act in 2008. Her plan would make America reach net zero emissions by 2050.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: Following her modern American liberalist views, Klobuchar supports Obamacare and is pro-choice, though she believes some limitations should apply to abortion. She would work on lowering the price of drugs and promoting generics. Klobuchar doesn’t support Medicare for all but wants to expand its coverage.

ON ECONOMY: Klobuchar’s purposed tax credits for workers forced out of jobs. She supports raising the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: Klobuchar supports LGBTQ+ and has worked against hate crimes from early on in her career, compared to the bipartisan beliefs at the time. She would study reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: Klobuchar believes in Citizenship for Dreamers and the ending of future southern board wall projects. She has stated that banning immigration based on religion is unconstitutional. Illegal immigrants should be allowed to have government-subsidized healthcare if they pay taxes.

OTHER: She was one of the two nominees for democratic nomination by the New York Times, the other being Warren.

AGAINST HER: Yahoo news has reported that her treatment of staffers is subpair if not unprofessional, with issues ranging from all cap emails nitpicking tweets with multiple colleges cc’d or “haranguing late-night phone calls.” Eight former employees have come out in ranging comments over the intense work environment.

Deval Patrick

AGE: 63 years old

PAST JOBS: He joined the Boston law firm called Hill and Barlow in 1986, before Former President Clinton nominated him as the United States Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division in 1994. Patrick became Governor of Massachusetts in 2006, and the first African American governor of the United States. He was reelected in 2010.

DEGREE: BA from Harvard and JD from Harvard Law

ON GUNS: In 2010, he began pushing for stricter gun laws due to a string of gun violent incidents within the state. He supports a ban on assault weapons and favors universal background checks. As for weapon registry, he agrees with gun licensing programs.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Patrick proposed a bill that would streamline appeals for wind energy within the Massachusetts area. He focused on expanding the state’s renewable energy but was forced back by lawmakers failing to raise solar and hydropower caps.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: In 2014, he signed a law requiring health insurers to cover up-to two weeks of inpatient care for people struggling with drug addiction. Patrick also signed a bill that allowed police to order anti-abortion protestors away from clinic entrances if they were blocking access.

ON ECONOMY: He has stated that trickle-down fantasies contributed largely to the recession. His has not specified a minimum wage change.

ON EQUALITY: “Citizens come before their government as equals,” Patrick said in 2005 about the legalization of same-sex marriage. His views on reparations are unknown.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: During the summer of 2014’s immigration influx, he proposed that 1,000 people could be taken into Massachusetts until they were able to be processed at immigrant centers.

AGAINST HIM: He drew criticism during his first governor race for letters written to the parole board about Benjamin LaGuer, who had been put in prison in 1984 for life after supposedly raping his neighbor for eight hours, as a “thoughtful, insightful, eloquent, [and] humane.” After the DNA results came back, finding him guilty, he withdrew his support. He also came under fire when the Boston Herald reported that his administration secret diverted about 27 million dollars in government funds to off-budget accounts.

Bernie Sanders

AGE: 78 years old

PAST JOBS: In 1971, he joined the Liberty Union Party and ran for governor of Vermont twice and senator twice. The party ran out of funding in 1977 and he and the candidate for attorney general announced retirement for the group. In 1980, Sanders ran for mayor and won, serving for eight years. Ten years later, he was elected for a house seat after a mayor defeat two year prior. In 2006, he was elected senator and was reinstated in 2012 and 2018.

DEGREE: BA in political science from University of Chicago

ON GUNS: Sanders supports a voluntary buy-back program and is in favor of universal background checks. He also would work towards closing the gun-show loophole.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Sanders supports paying farmers to adopt climate-friendly practices. He has taken a strong stance on reversing the greenhouse effect and considers it the “greatest threat to national security.” In June of 2019, along with Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez and Earl Blumenauer, he proposed legislation that would declare climate change a national and international crisis.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: He believes abortions should have few limits if any. Sanders is all in on Medicare for all, a universal-coverage healthcare, and promoting generics to lower drug cost.

ON ECONOMY: Sanders would remove all student debt, make college free, and expanding social security benefits. He is resistant against the top percent of the upper class, once saying, “in the wealthiest nation in the history of the world, the top one-tenth of one percent should not own almost as much wealth as the bottom ninety percent.” He would raise the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour.

ON EQUALITY: In 1983, then-Mayor Sanders signed a proclamation recognizing Gay Rights Day, which was also the cities first pride parade. He was one of the 81 Representatives that voted against the Defense of Marriage Act, a bill to recognize the legal term ‘marriage’ as a union between a man and a woman. In 1999, he voted against Republican attempts to ban same-sex couples from adopting children. Throughout his time in the Senate, he has maintained a high score from the Human Rights Campaign’s Congressional Scorecard. Sanders would study reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: He supports Citizenship for Dreamers, repealing the statue of illegal entry, and not grating additional funding to the southern boarder wall. Sanders said, “[The United States is] a nation of immigrants. That is, in fact, the strength of America.” His plan, A Welcoming and Safe America for All, encompasses improving visas, securing the boarder, and protecting undocumented and guest workers from labor exploitation.

AGAINST HIM: Sanders has been criticized for extremely leftist views, often using the term ‘socialist’ in reference to his plans. He also suffered a heart attack on October 9th, 2019, to which many have deemed dangerous if he were elected, though Sanders has been working to regain his health.

Tom Steyer

AGE: 62 years old

PAST JOBS: In 1986, he founded Farallon Capital (hedge fund firm) however in 2012, he stepped away from the business to focus on alternative energy sources. Steyer and his wife, Taylor, have founded OneRoof Inc., Beneficial State Bank, and One PacificCoast Foundation in 2006 and 2007.

DEGREE: BA in political science and economics from Yale University and BMA from Stanford Business School

ON GUNS: Steyer supports a ban on assault weapons and imposing universal background checks. He agrees that ‘red flag’ laws, i.e. the restriction of gun ownership from people who present danger to others or themselves, should be federally implanted along with closing gun show loopholes. He favors a national firearms registry.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Besides leaving Farallon Capital, in 2012 Steyer let go of his carbon-polluting investments, though critics have called to light that his funds will keep the companies running until 2030. Under Steyer, Farallon invested or lent money that increased coal production by 70 million tons annually. He founded the TomKat Ranch to explore sustainably farming and in 2013 he founded NextGen Climate, a two-day climate and political action think tank.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: Steyer is against implementing Medicare for All but would work towards expanding coverage. His opinion on abortion is unclear.

ON ECONOMY: Steyer once described the Republican tax reform proposal in 2017 as a “thinly veiled reverse Robin Hood.” His plan for the economy focuses on removing large corporations from political influence and raising the minimum wage, though it is unclear to what sum per hour.

ON EQUALITY: Talking about Vice-President Pence’s anti-LGBTQ+ history, Steyer said, “I thought it was classic that Trump chose someone who had vilified another part of our community – the LGBT part of our community” (Politico). His stance on reparations are unclear.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: Steyer has criticized how the Trump campaign’s “made immigrants in desperation ‘the Enemy’” as he wrote in a tweet. He supports Citizenship for Dreamers as well as executive action to help legalize in the meantime. Steyer does not believe in additional funding to the wall.

OTHER: Since the beginning of 2017, Steyer has poured 10 million dollars into a television ad campaign to advocate for President Trump to be impeached.

AGAINST HIM: The Washington Post has reported that his plans need serious work, referring to gaps they have for substantive politics and instead only focusing on reworking the process of democracy. His campaign has a base in reworking corporate America but his past businesses, especially Farallon, contradict this topic.

Elizabeth Warren

AGE: 70 years old

PAST JOBS: In 2012, Warren was elected into the Senate from the state of Massachusetts against the odds of a campaign run against big business, with no backing from Wall Street. Her speeches for taxation in relation to income were later echoed by Former President Obama. She was reelected at the end of her term, starting in 2019.

DEGREE: She attended George Washington University for a degree in speech pathology and audiology and the University of Houston and Rutgers Law School for her JD

ON GUNS: Her goal as president would be reducing gun deaths by 80%, about which she has stated, “you’ve got to start with a goal. I haven’t heard anyone else talk about a goal” (the NPR Politics Podcast). This would be achieved by “immediate administrative action,” comprised of background checks, revoking the license of gun dealers who break the law, and investigating the NRA.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Warren supports imposing government regulations on carbon emissions. She would also pay farmers to adopt climate-friendly practices. If elected, she would begin to implement the Green New Deal, which would make the USA achieve net zero emissions by 2030.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: Within the most recent debates, Warren has notably turned away from her “Medicare for All” preaching, to a slower approach of her first term, instead using it to set up the basis for its implementing but allowing the American people the right to choose. These changing concepts have come in time with questions about her electability if she continued to push Medicare and a growing rebuttal to Sanders’ similar programs. On abortion, she believes there should be few restrictions if any.

ON ECONOMY: She supports increasing taxes on the rich (income tax) to fund social programs. Warren would raise the minimum wage to fifteen dollars an hour. Part of her more well-known plains include free college and the erasing of student debt, though she has stepped back on these topics in recent debates. Warren supports raising the minimum wage to 15 dollar an hour.

ON EQUALITY: When asked what she would say to a voter, who she hypothesized to be male for the sake of the argument, who believed in the old-fashion ways of marriage (a man and a woman) during CNN Equality Hall, Warren said, “then just marry one woman. I’m cool with that.” After a moment, Warrant added, “if you can find one.” The reply became viral. She would study reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: She believes in the decriminalizing of crossing the border without papers, increasing aid to Central America, and reducing immigration detention. Warren’s overarching goal is to undo the choices of the Trump administration, especially the reports of inhuman conditions within detainment centers and reviving asylum and protection policies.

OTHER: In the 1980s, Warren is reported to have had extreme conservative views, advocating for the continuation of laissez faire economics and “anti-consumer” policies. During the 2016 election, Warren backed Hillary Clinton when she got the democratic nomination, calling Trump a dishonest and uncaring “loser.” She was one of the two nominees for democratic nomination by the New York Times, the other being Klobuchar.

AGAINST HER: Like Sanders, she has been targeted by critics -both Republicans and neutral Democrats- as a radical in politics. As mentioned in the Healthcare section above, she has backed away from such a binary stance.

Andrew Yang

AGE: 45 years-old

PAST JOBS: From 2000 to 2010, Yang worked as a founder or executive for businesses in early growth stages. Specially, he served as vice president for a healthcare startup from 2002 to 2005. In 2011, he founded Venture for America which is a nonprofit that forces on creating jobs in struggling areas who were hit by the Great Recession. His started his 2020 presidential campaign in 2017, working out with a small staff in an apartment.

DEGREE: BS in economics and political science from Brown University and a JD from Columbia Law School

ON GUNS: Yang supports a voluntary buy-back program, universal background checks, and gun licensing programs. On his website (yang2020.com), he states that in America “current gun laws have been pushed in a dangerous direction by lobbying groups only looking out for the profits of gun manufacturers” though his plans are vague.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: He supports urging Americans to eat less meat to combat climate change. On the issue of California, he made a metaphor for the American mindset, saying, “we avoid spending what we should – but end up paying tragically in the end” (insideclimatenews.org).

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: Yang believes there should be few limits if any on abortion. He doesn’t believe in Medicare for All but does support expanding its coverage – “I support [its] spirit… [its] not a realistic strategy” Yang said about his new plan in December. These views are like the turn Warren has taking in the most recent debates. Instead, his plan is to help rural and low-income people have more access to care and increase health benefits for mental, dental, and vision care. A large part of this action would be to keep lobbyists and executives out of this policymaking.

ON ECONOMY: One of the most recognized policies of Yang is his plan to pay every American a basic income – all adult American citizen receiving 1,000 dollars a month. He targets the recent trend of high cooperate profit, pointing out that stress, student loans, and suicide/drug overdoses are at an all-time high as well. Yang believes that minimum wage should be decided by the state.

ON EQUALITY: Yang thinks that the US must make true on its Constitution of freedom by protecting LGBTQ+ individuals as well as race and gender. He supports the Equality Act and Do No Harm Act, both of which improve gender and sexual identities. He would study reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: He supports Citizenship for Dreamers and decimalizing illegal border crossing. Unlike the other democratic candidates, he supports funding to border walls if experts recommend it. His DREAM Act would improve the legal protection of children brought into the US even though this is the only home they know.

OTHER: His campaign has run multiple slogans that include “MATH” (Make America Think Harder) and “Not Left, Not Right, Forward.”

AGAINST HIM: His polls are extremely low, around the one percent range. Critics have questioned how his 1,000 dollar per month plan would pan out, and if his use of campaign fund to test run the economic plan with three American families is legal.

Republicans:

Donald Trump

AGE: 73 years old

PAST JOBS: In 1971, Trump took over his family’s real-estate business and renamed in the Trump Organization. This company built or renovated hotels, skyscrapers, golf courses, and casinos. Trump owned Miss Universe and Miss USA beauty pageants from 1996 to 2015. From 2003 to 2015, he produced and hosted ‘The Apprentice,’ a reality tv show about business.

DEGREE: Degree in economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

ON GUNS: Trump supports current gun regulations, though he has proposed multiple changes to increasing restrictions. “No, we are not moving on anything,” Trump told Fox News. “We are going very slowly in one way because we want to make sure it’s right. We’re doing [a] very careful job.” He explained that he doesn’t want “bad people” to be able to obtain guns, but that in this current political climate, people are worried that any laws will be taking away their guns, and their rights.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: In 2009, Trump signed a full page advert in the New York Times, along with other large business owners, with a statement “If we fail to act now, it is scientifically irrefutable that there will be catastrophic and irreversible consequences for humanity and our plant.” But by 2012, he tweeted that climate change was a “created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive.” Since winning the election in 2016, his environment-related tweets have become more ambiguous and more targeted towards clean water and air, as well as the cost to businesses.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: The Trump administration created the American Health Care Act (AHCA) to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. The bill passed the House but could not get enough votes in the Senate and therefore did not make it to the president’s desk. In 2018, under President Trump, there was a reversal of the Short-Term Limited Duration (STLD) health insurance cutting down the time people could stay on it from 364 days to 90 days.

ON ECONOMY: The main points of Trump’s economic plans (“America First Plan”) include immigration reduction, trade protectionism, and tax reform for corporations and individuals. Under his term, the Consumer Protection Act was repealed. According to a Market Insider poll, President Trump has the highest economic approval rating in 20 years, 63%, which only falls short at George W Bush’s 73% approval in 2001.

ON EQUALITY: President Trump was the first president to mention LGBTQ+ individuals in his inaugural speech, however his vice president, Mike Pence, is well known for his anti-queer sediments. Within two hours after being sworn in, any mention of LGBTQ+ issues were removed from the White House webpage. On reparations, i.e. repaying (to some extent) the mistreatment and enslavement of African Americans, Trump has stated that he thinks “it’s been a very interesting debate. I don’t see it happening, no.”

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: Perhaps the most iconic statement of President Trump, building a wall across the Mexican boarder has been on the forefront of the immigration issue starting in 2016. More specifically, he supports a lower immigration number to the United States, and he is more focused on internal affairs.

AGAINST HIM: President Trump was recently acquitted of impeachment charges by the Senate, but there is still tension between the Democrats and Republicans over the issue. He has been caught up in multiple controversies – the Ukraine quid pro quo, Russian interference, and travel bans. Since 1980, President Trump has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than 23 women.

Joe Walsh

AGE: 58 years old

PAST JOBS: From 2011 to 2013, Walsh was the representative of Illinois’ eighth district.

DEGREE: He got a BA in English from University of Iowa and a Mater of Public Policy at University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy Studies

ON GUNS: Walsh tell Business Insider that he’s “a big gun guy; I believe in the Second Amendment, plain and simple.” He has called for universal background checks when purchasing firearms. Walsh is against anti-gun laws and that the constitution gives Americans the ability to carry guns for the protection of their homes.

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: He has stated that he would recognize climate change as an impact on human activities.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: In 2012, Walsh said that abortion is never medically necessary to save the life of a mother, “with modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance” (Politico).

ON ECONOMY: Walsh believes that the budget deficit is bankrupting future generations in the US. He also supports limiting the federal spending growth to per-capita inflation rates.

ON EQUALITY: Walsh would roll back the barring of LGBTQ+ from serving in the military, which was imposed under the Trump administration. “Anyone who can qualify to serve in the military – gay, straight, or transgender – should be able to serve” (PBS). He has referred to the LGBTQ+ community as “constitutional terrorists.” He supports suspending radio shows if they discuss racial slurs.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: Walsh disagrees with the state of immigration under the Trump administration. He believes that tougher action on those crossing illegally should be taken, but that it would also be important to devote more resources to adjudicate asylum cases, because those are legal crossings.

OTHER: “Today’s Republican Party is Trump’s Republican Party. In fact, it’s not a party, it’s a cult. I refuse to belong to a cult,” Walsh tweeted on February 6.

AGAINST HIM: Walsh was one of the congressmen who “fanned the fire” of the conspiracy that former-President Obama was Muslim (PBS). He has also defended his past statement that “blacks are lazy” as free speech but has made no more comments.

William Weld

AGE: 74 years old

PAST JOBS: His legal career began with the impeachment inquiry of former-President Nixon, contributing to the “Constitutional Grounds for President Impeachment” report. He was a District Attorney for Massachusetts from 1981-1986, followed by role of United States Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division until 1988. From 1991 to 1997, Weld was the Governor of Massachusetts.

DEGREE: A BA in Classics from Harvard College and JD from Harvard Law School

ON GUNS: In 1993, Weld supported a gun control bill that limited gun purchases for those 21 and younger, as well as prohibiting perfect types of weapons. The bill didn’t pass, and Weld has since renounced the proposal. Currently, he believes the only restrictions on guns should be for “the mentally ill and criminals.”

ON CLIMATE CHANGE: Weld supports a people-based choice on climate action. He would not force any plans against the will of citizens and believes that carbon tax is the most feasible option economically.

ON BIRTH CONTROL/HEALTHCARE: He supports easier access to Medicare, more consumer choice instead of single-payer, and changing Obamacare so that it that has “more market mechanisms, greater role for doctors and patient, [and] narrow the individual mandate” (ontheissues). Weld has been strongly pro-choice his entire career. He has said that the government should not interfere with women’s decision to get an abortion.

ON ECONOMY: Overall, Weld supports cutting taxes, reigning in spending, and ending President Trump’s tariffs. He hasn’t backed raising minimum wage in the past. Weld wants to create closer relationships with Canada and Mexico.

ON EQUALITY: Weld has moved towards pro LGBTQ+ rights from his earlier actions in government. He has supported allowing transgender individuals to access the bathrooms of their choice.

ON CITIZENS/ALIENS: He has compared President Trump’s immigration policy to the fearmongering of Nazi Germany’s government. Weld supports some legal access for illegal immigrates to the United States.

AGAINST HIM: Weld has extremely low polling within the republican candidates. He has run under the libertarian party in the past. Only 8% of Republican and Republican-leaning voters thought they would support Bill Weld instead of President Trump for the 2020 election according to a March poll from Monmouth University of last year.