Tulsi Gabbard: First Hindu in US Congress, To Take on Trump in 2020

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Tulsi And Trump

“I have decided to run and will be making a formal announcement within the next week,” Gabbard, a liberal 37-year-old Iraq War veteran as well as the first Hindu and first Samoan-American elected to the US Congress, told CNN.

Democratic US Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii said in remarks aired by CNN on Friday that she will run for president in 2020, becoming the latest member of her party to pursue a challenge to Republican President Donald Trump.

I have decided to run and will be making a formal announcement within the next week,” Gabbard, a liberal 37-year-old Iraq War veteran as well as the first Hindu and first Samoan-American elected to the US Congress, told CNN.

US Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts on December 31 announced she had formed an exploratory committee for a White House run in what is expected to be a crowded Democratic primary field before the November 2020 presidential election.

Gabbard said “the issue of war and peace” would be the main focus of her campaign.

There are a lot of reasons for me to make this decision. There are a lot of challenges that are facing the American people that I’m concerned about and that I want to help solve,” she said.

Gabbard’s announcement comes ahead of what is expected to be a wave of high-profile candidates throwing their hats in the ring.

Elizabeth Warren
Elizabeth Warren

Senator Elizabeth Warren has formed an exploratory committee for a presidential bid, and last week took a high-profile trip to the early voting state of Iowa.

Former vice President Joe Biden and progressive Senator Bernie Sanders, whom Gabbard supported over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primaries, are also mulling entering the race.

Julian Castro, a former mayor of San Antonio who served in Barack Obama‘s cabinet as housing secretary, says he will announce his 2020 plans on Saturday.

Gabbard drew heavy criticism when she met secretly with Assad in Damascus in 2017 during a fact-finding mission that also took her to the decimated city of Aleppo. She also met with refugees and Syrian opposition leaders.

Originally, I had no intention of meeting with Assad, but when given the opportunity, I felt it was important to take it,” Gabbard said when her trip became public.

I think we should be ready to meet with anyone if there’s a chance it can help bring about an end to this war, which is causing the Syrian people so much suffering.”

However, Her office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Gabbard was deployed to Iraq in 2005, and she maintains her role as a member of the Hawaii National Guard.

Tulsi Gabbard
Tulsi Gabbard

The Democratic presidential field could eventually include Senators Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Kirsten Gillibrand, as well as former Vice President Joe Biden. Julian Castro, former President Barack Obama’s housing secretary, also formed an exploratory committee in December.

In the race to pick a candidate to run against Trump, Democrats will grapple with the tension between the party’s establishment and liberal wings that flared during the 2016 state-by-state nominating contests between former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent who ran under the Democratic banner.

Gabbard made headlines in 2016 by quitting a leadership post at the Democratic National Committee over the party’s decision to limit the number of debates between Clinton and Sanders, with analysts believing fewer debates benefited Clinton. Clinton ultimately won the Democratic nomination but lost to Trump.

The congresswoman then endorsed Sanders for president, becoming one of the few members of Congress to do so. Gabbard remains popular with some liberals but will have serious competition with other candidates on the left flank of the party.

Gabbard has also drawn criticism for secretly meeting with Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, whose removal from power she opposes, during a 2017 trip to the war-ravaged country.

Iowa holds the first presidential nominating contest in 13 months. Warren informally kicked off the 2020 Democratic presidential nominating fight on visit last weekend to Iowa, condemning the corrupting influence of money on politics and lamenting lost economic opportunities for working families.

Do you think that the first Hindu and the first Samoan-American elected to the US Congress will take over Donald Trump?

Let us know in the comments section below.

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