Virtual Debates: 2020 Presidential Issues

Crime

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Kirsten Gillibrand

When low-income people and people of color face huge disparities in arrests, sentencing, and incarceration compared to wealthy and white people for the same or lesser charges, it’s a clear and urgent sign that we need to rectify the injustices in our criminal justice system. We have a mass incarceration crisis, and institutional racism pervades the way we enforce laws. To rectify this, we should legalize marijuana at the federal level and expunge past records; reform our sentencing laws so that judges can have more flexibility when dealing with low-level, nonviolent drug offenses; change federal rules for our prisons; end cash bail; and invest resources in communities harmed by the racist war on drugs.

Source: Campaign Website

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Amy Klobuchar

Gun violence prevention policies are long overdue. Amy supports a package of gun violence policies including instituting universal background checks by closing the gun show loophole and banning bump stocks, high capacity ammunition feeding devices and assault weapons. She is also the author of a proposal that would close what is commonly referred to as the ‘boyfriend loophole’ by preventing people who have abused dating partners from buying or owning firearms.

Source: Candidate Website

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John Delaney

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Beto O'Rourke

Let us not just end the prohibition of marijuana, or the expungement of the records of those arrested solely for possession of a substance legal in most of this country — let’s go beyond ending cash bail, prisons for profit and the war on drugs and confront the true legacy of slavery, of segregation and suppression, of how people have been criminalized and kept down based on their race and ethnicity.Source: Candidate Website

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Joe Biden

There are too many people in prison. Too many black men and I might add, too many black women in prison. Our reforms started to reduce that population. Under our reforms 38,000 people came out. No more mandatory minimums. End private prisons. Bail reform. No juveniles in adult prison. Instead of teaching people how to be better criminals in prison, we should be educating people in prison. Automatic restoration of rights once your sentence is served, meaning not only that you can vote, but also that you automatically qualify for every program, including Pell grants so you can go on to get your education.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Joe Sestak

Lawmakers owe it to the American people to explore every possible remedy to the crisis of gun violence in our country. We must find a way to reduce the staggering number of gun deaths each year while still maintaining our 2nd Amendment rights. It’s long past time we got serious.

Source: Candidate Website

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Wayne Messam

We actually, right now, because the NRA has such a restrictive law in our state, I can't even ban assault style weapons in our city parks where our kids play. I'm not sitting back, I'm suing the State of Florida so that mayors can have a bigger say in gun control in our cities.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Julián Castro

If we are going to be the fairest nation on earth then we need to reimagine and reform our justice system so that everybody is innocent until proven guilty. Sentencing reform, cash bail reform, investing in public defenders.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Bernie Sanders

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Michael Bennet

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John Hickenlooper

We [Colorado] beat the NRA and became the first purple state to get universal background checks.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Seth Moulton

We fight in 2020 because this election is about our basic human rights.... Not the right to carry and AR-15 around, but the right to know that our kids are going to go to school and come home in one piece.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Cory Booker

We will take a fight to the corporate gun lobby and we will win.

Source: Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame (May 2019)

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Donald Trump

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Tom Steyer

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Pete Buttigieg

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Bill de Blasio

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Steve Bullock

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Jay Inslee

Trump and the republicans say if you give people a raise, no one will have a business. Well, guess what, we've got the highest minimum wage in the United States and the biggest job growth in the United States of America. That's what you get, and that's why we need a $15/hr minimum wage.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Eric Swalwell

My top priority is to believe that we can end gun violence in America. We can honor the Emanuel 9. And every person in every city whose name we never heard and whose story was never told - by taking action and believing that your right to hug your kids when they come home, to dance at a concert, to laugh at a theater, to pray at a mosque, a church, a synagogue is greater than any other right in the constitution.

Source: South Carolina Democratic Convention (June 2019)

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Mike Gravel

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Bill Weld

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Elizabeth Warren

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Tim Ryan

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Marianne Williamson

Support for universal background checks, and legislation that would revoke gun ownership from people believed to pose a danger to themselves.

Source: PBS

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Andrew Yang

For many Americans, guns are a big part of their culture and identity. However, guns are a major responsibility ... gun owners should continue to enjoy the right to bear arms, subject to licensing and education requirements that will encourage the public safety.

Source: Campaign Website

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Tulsi Gabbard

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