2020 presidential candidate race begins

With the 2020 Presidential election campaign season approaching, 11 candidates have announced bids for their party’s nomination.

Cory Booker (D-NJ) announced he is running for president Feb. 1. As a senator, he advocates for criminal justice reform with Republican Rand Paul, advocates for scaling back federal criminal penalties for marijuana and pushes for civil rights, according to npr.org.

Booker gained attention for his questioning of President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. He faced criticism for his ties to Wall Street and defense of private equity, the pharmaceutical industry and charter schools.

“We are better when we help each other,” Booker said in a video message. “I believe that we can build a country where no one is forgotten, no one is left behind; where parents can put food on the table; where there are good paying jobs with good benefits in every neighborhood; where our criminal justice system keeps us safe, instead of shuffling more children into cages and coffins; where we see the faces of our leaders on television and feel pride, not shame.”

Pete Buttigeig (D-IN) announced that he is running for president Jan. 23. At 37 years old, Buttigeig is one of the youngest to declare for presidency and the first married gay man to make a run for the position.

Buttigeig serves as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Reserve, according to ballotpedia.org. In 2014, he completed a seven-month tour of duty in Afghanistan and earned the Joint Service Commendation Medal for his contributions to counter terrorism.

According to npr.org, he wants policies “untethered to the politics of the past” and has played up being part of a “generation that is stepping forward.”

Julian Castro (D-TX), formally announced his candidacy Jan. 12.

Castro was the secretary of housing and urban development from May 2014 to January 2017. Former president Barack Obama nominated Castro May 23, 2014, and was confirmed by the Senate July 9, 2014, by a vote of 71-26, according to ballotpedia.org.

John Delaney (D-MD) filed to run for president Aug. 10, 2017.

Delaney has called for reforming the campaign finance system and more gun restrictions. He also called for an end to gerrymandering.

Gerrymandering is a practice intended to establish a political advantage for a particular party or group by manipulating district boundaries. The resulting district is known as a gerrymander.

Prior to his congressional career, Delaney founded two New York Stock Exchange companies, as well as Blueprint Maryland, a nonprofit organization focused on the creation of jobs in Maryland’s private sector, according to ballotpedia.org.

Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) announced she is running for president Jan. 15.

According to npr.org, The New York senator tried to elevate women’s equality as an issue and took the lead in the Senate in calling on the military to reform its sexual violence policies.

Gillibrand served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2007 to 2009. In 2009, she was appointed to fill the Senate seat vacated through Hillary Clinton’s appointment to Secretary of State. In 2010, she won the required special election to the seat with 63 percent of the vote, according to ballotpedia.org.

Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), a U.S. representative from Hawaii, announced her run for presidency Jan. 11.

Gabbard served in the Army National Guard, stepping down from the Hawaii state legislature in 2004 for the first of two deployments to the Middle East. She is running as an anti-war democrat, according to npr.org.

Kamala Harris (D-CA) announced she is running for president Jan. 21.

Harris was first elected to Senate in 2016 and became the second black woman elected to the U.S. Senate and the first Indian American to serve in the chamber, according to ballotpedia.org.

Harris is the former attorney general of California. She served in the position from 2011 to 2017. When she took office, Harris became the state’s first female, first black and first Asian American attorney general, as well as the first Tamil attorney general in U.S. history. She served as San Francisco’s district attorney from 2004 to 2011.

President Donald Trump filed to run for re-election in 2020 Jan. 20, 2017. Trump is the 45th and current president of the United States.

Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) announced she formed an exploratory committee Dec. 31, 2018.

Warren’s leadership positions include serving as Chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel for the Troubled Asset Relief Program from 2008 to 2010 and as special assistant to President Barack Obama for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau from 2010 to 2011. Prior to her election to the Senate, Warren served as a professor at Harvard Law School, according to ballotpedia.org.

Marianne Williamson, a spiritual guru, and entrepreneur, announced her candidacy Jan. 28. Williamson is a best-selling author and a spiritual counselor to Oprah Winfrey.

In 2014, Williamson ran for a congressional seat in California as an independent, but finished fourth, according to npr.org. Williamson is running as a democratic candidate.

Andrew Yang, an entrepreneur from New York, filed to run for president Nov. 6, 2017.

Yang is in favor of establishing a “universal basic income” for all adults and proposes giving Americans $1,000 a month to offset the loss of wages from automation, according to npr.org.

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