Virtual Debates

Where do 2020 Presidential Candidates Stand on the Issues?

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Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado

We have many points of view in our country, and rediscovering our will to reconcile, navigate, and negotiate them is how we correct our course. This is not a call for lazy moderation or lame bipartisan agreements that split the difference between two political parties’ obsolete ideas. It is a call for the difficult, imaginative give-and-take that can produce enduring, forward-looking results.

Source: Medium Article by Michael Bennet

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Former Vice President Joe Biden

You all know in your bones that this election is more important than any that we've ever been engaged in. We have a president that has promoted hate and division, encourages white supremacy, praises dictators, and in fact, goes around the world weakening our alliances. Our children are watching - and it matters what presidents say and do. Four more years of Donald Trump will permanently change the character of this country. We can't let that happen. We have to beat Donald Trump. I am unwilling any longer to postpone the potential of this nation.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey

I'm running for president because we can't take four more years of Donald Trump. And I'm running for president because beating Donald Trump is not enough. We must have bigger aspirations and bolder dreams than just that. Beating Donald Trump is the floor, not the ceiling.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Governor Steve Bullock of Montana

Money has broken the political system’s power to take even the first step. We have to do more than just win this election — we have to make Washington work for us. Not for Big Money, not for the special interests, but for each one of us in the communities we call home.

Source: Campaign Website

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Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana

We are living through a moment of huge upheaval, but also of great opportunity. This moment demands that our policies reflect a deep understanding of Americans’ everyday lives and embody our country’s highest values: Freedom, Security, and Democracy. It’s not just about winning an election; it’s about winning an era.

Source: Campaign Website

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Former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro of Texas

I'm running for president because I believe it's time for new energy and new leadership in this country with a new vision for our future. It is time for a leader who is a president for everyone, that understands we must move forward as one nation, with one destiny in the years to come. I am convinced that that destiny for America is to be the smartest, the healthiest, the fairest, and the most prosperous nation on earth.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Representative John Delaney of Maryland

We need to ensure that America works for hard-working Americans. We need to become the party of ideas. The party that embraces debate. The party that wants to build a big tent - so that progressives that want change, moderates that want solutions, independents who just want their elected officials to put their country first, and even those disaffected republicans who look at this president and see that he has no moral compass and have turned their back on that party. If we become that party, we're going to win every election.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii

The founders of our nation had a great vision for us, that our government should be of the people, by the people, and for the people. But that is not what we have today. Instead we have a government that is of, by, and for the rich and powerful, and we the people are left behind. You deserve a president that will put your interests ahead of the rich and powerful. As your president, I will bring a soldiers heart, that sense of service above self, to the white house, putting people ahead of profits, putting your well-being and the interests of the American people above all else.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Senator Kamala Harris of California

As my first policy proposal, I am prepared to make the first federal investment in the history of our country in closing that teacher pay gap. The is part of the backbone of what I believe needs to be done right now, which is to make the case for America. Make the case for our America. America, where healthcare is a right, not a privilege. An America where teachers are paid their value. An America where women have the right to make decisions about their own bodies. An America where people only have to work one job to put food on the table and a roof over their head. An America where our kids don't have to go to school every day and be concerned about some mass shooter roaming the hallways of their school. An America where the president knows it is a sign of strength, not to beat people down, but to lift people up./p>Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota

I’m running because I believe we can be a nation governed not by chaos — but from opportunity. The kind of opportunity my grandpa — who worked 1500 feet underground in the mines in Northern Minnesota — gave my family when he saved money in a coffee can in the basement to send my dad to college. The kind of opportunity my mom, a school teacher and a proud union member, gave me when she taught me to live with purpose. The kind of opportunity my dad, a newspaperman, gave me to always look for life’s adventures and never shy away from adversity.

Source: Campaign Website

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Mayor Wayne Messam of Miramar, Florida

For us to take the White House back, we have to hear from candidates like myself. One of the youngest candidates that's bringing fresh and dynamic ideas to this debate. We cannot forget those who are disenchanted. Issues that deal with people of color, with women, with the LGBT community - we need them to be energized, inspired, and to show up at the ballot box. And when we ignore their voices, it hurts our opportunities to win. So I'm running for president because I feel that the same American dream that I've been blessed to achieve because of the hard sacrifice of my parents is slipping away from too many Americans. Too many Americans have to work more than one job to make ends meet, too many seniors cannot afford their high-cost prescription medication, too many Americans cannot get access to healthcare.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Former Representative Beto O'Rourke of Texas

We are all focused on the same goal for our country - beating Donald Trump in 2020 and to bring this country together again in 2021.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont

Let me be frank with you for a moment, while we all agree on the need to get rid of Donald Trump, we disagree on the best way to do that. In my view, we will not defeat Donald Trump unless we bring excitement and energy into this campaign, unless we greatly expand voter turnout, and unless we give working people and young people a reason to vote, and a reason to believe that participating in politics will improve their lives. We can create a nation where all people have healthcare and unlimited educational opportunities as a right. Where veterans are not sleeping out on the street and children are not going hungry.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Representative Joe Sestak of Pennsylvania

Accountability means answering for oneself, not for one’s intentions, but for the deed. We need a leader who is trusted by the people because he is willing to be accountable to them – above self, above party, above any special interest, no matter the cost to him.

Source: Candidate Website

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Philanthropist Tom Steyer

Tom Steyer stepped down as head of his investment firm in 2012 to dedicate all his time to philanthropy and political action focused on making America more just by putting the people, not the corporations, in charge of our democracy.

Source: Candidate Website

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Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts

Ready for big, structural change? I got a plan for that.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Spiritual teacher and author Marianne Williamson of California

If you think our job is simply to find someone tough enough to beat Donald Trump you are naive about the nature of the opponent. Something deeper, something far more dangerous is going on here than traditional political toughness than anyone knows how to handle. Donald Trump has touched people - in a very fearful place. And only one thing can cast out that fear. It's not money, it's not just strategy, it's not just anger, and it's not just mobilizing our base. It is love. Last time we won with hope. This time we will win with love. And ultimately, we will only win if we touch enough people's hearts. I know something about harnessing the emotions of large groups of people. Donald Trump has built a career harnessing fear, and I have built a career inspiring love. The only way to defeat a Big Lie is through the power of a Big Truth. too many democrats are half-truth tellers, and Donald Trump will eat the half-truth tellers alive.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Tech entrepreneur Andrew Yang of New York

An Asian man, running for president, that wants to give everyone $1000/month.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Former Governor of Massachusetts

I'm running for president of the United States against President Trump in 2020. I really think if we have 6 more years of the same stuff we've had out of the White House for the last 2 years that would be a political tragedy and I would fear for the republic.

Source: CNN Interview

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Economic Stimulus

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Health Care

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Education

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Drug Policy

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Environment

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Civil Rights

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Tech and Innovation

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Foreign Policy

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Domestic Policy

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