Democratic presidential candidates step up to the Des Moines Register Soapbox

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Julian Castro

Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary and Democratic presidential candidate Julian Castro speaks during a candidate forum on labor issues Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

DES MOINES — Several Democratic presidential candidates are speaking with voters on the Des Moines Register’s Soapbox during this year’s Iowa State Fair.

Steve Bullock

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock made his pitch to Iowa voters on why they should pick him as the Democratic presidential nominee.

“We expect more out of our preschoolers now than we do the president of the United States. And it’s more than just that. It’s about rejecting the crony capitalism that he’s created.”

Steve Bullock, August 8, 2019

Bullock also spoke about:

  • His healthcare policy, which would build on the Affordable Care Act
  • The negative impact the trade war is having on American farmers
  • His success in the historically red state of Montana. Bullock said his success there would help him win battle ground states like Iowa, Michigan and Wisconsin

Julián Castro

Former HUD Secretary Julián Castro told fairgoers on Friday his solution to recent mass shootings.

“This morning, I did put out a policy proposal on combating white nationalism, domestic terrorism that includes gun safety legislation.”

Julian Castro, August 9, 2019

In addition, Castro outlined other priorities if he is elected:

  • Roll out universal pre-Kindergarten for three and four year olds
  • Place undocumented immigrants, who haven’t committed a serious crime, on a pathway to citizenship
  • End family separation and detention

John Delaney

Former Representative John Delaney and Democratic presidential candidate made a pledge in front of voters on the soapbox.

“I’m calling for universal health care, where every American gets health care as a basic human right, every American.”

Former Rep. John Delaney (D-MD), August 9, 2019

Delaney said if people want to keep their union health care or Medicare Advantage (among other choices), they can.

He also outlined other priorities if elected:

  • Wants to create the biggest infrastructure program since the start of the federal highway system
  • Wants to make it easier for caregivers to get paid
  • Commit to make pre-Kindergarten universal

Tulsi Gabbard

Representative and Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard spoke to voters on the soapbox Thursday, sharing the change she wants to see in Washington, D.C.

“There are very clear reforms that we need to make in Washington, to overturn Citizens United, to get rid of dark money in politics, to make it so that politicians aren’t influenced by the PAC contributions they get from lobbyists.”

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), August 9, 2019

Gabbard also outlined policies she would undertake if elected president:

  • Supports “Medicare for All legislation” to ensure every American can receive care, but gives people the option to get private insurance
  • Moving away from fossil fuels, and investing in renewable energy, to combat climate change
  • Gabbard has also mentioned that in Congress, she introduced a bill that would end the federal government’s marijuana prohibition

Marianne Williamson

Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson told a crowd of fair goers it’s important to be frank.

“I’m very aware of my profound right that we have to say what we think, we have a profound responsibility to say what we think.”

Marianne Williamson, Democratic presidential candidate

Williamson outlined priorities that she would push for if elected president, such as creating a Department of Peace.

Andrew Yang

Entrepreneur and Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang took the soapbox stage Friday.

He noted a reason behind the results of the 2016 election, in which Donald Trump won the presidential election.

“To me, the driving force behind Donald Trump’s victory was that we automated away four million manufacturing jobs in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Missouri and 40,000 right here in Iowa.”

Andrew Yang, August 9, 2019

Yang also noted how he could help the economy:

  • Give every American $1,000 a month., also known as a citizen’s dividend.
  • Move some military spending towards infrastructure
  • Wang also proposed the IRS filing out people’s taxes for them, and allow people to sign off on their return


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