The year 2020 may seem like a long time from now, but it’s not when you’re considering a run for the President of the United States. That’s why we’re keeping a close eye on who’s throwing their name into the hat to challenge President Trump for the job of POTUS. Who’s announced, who’s formed an exploratory committee (a group that is formed to explore the idea of whether or not a potential candidate should run for an elected office), and who are some possible candidates? Check out what we know so far:
Current Position: US Senator of Massachusetts
Senator Warren is considered a liberal Democrat who has openly criticized President Trump for his name-calling and bullying. She wants to end corruption, help the middle class, and save democracy. Last December, Senator Warren announced that she had formed an official exploratory committee which will allow her to raise money and hire staff before she formally announces her bid to run for President of the United States.
Interesting Fact: When Senator Warren won the US Senate race in 2012, she became the first female US Senator of Massachusetts.
Former Positions: San Antonio Mayor and US Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
At just thirty years old, Julián Castro became the Mayor of San Antonio, Texas. Nine years later, he joined former President Barack Obama’s cabinet as the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. At thirty-nine years old, he was the youngest member of former President Obama’s cabinet. Earlier this week, Mr. Castro officially announced his presidential bid for 2020. What’s his message? That “we must work together to build an America where everyone—no matter who we are or where we came from—can thrive.”
Interesting Fact: He’s a twin! Julián’s twin brother is Congressman Joaquín Castro!
Current Position: US Representative of Hawaii
Tulsi Gabbard currently represents the state of Hawaii’s 2nd congressional district in the US House of Representatives. She formally announced her 2020 US presidential bid earlier this month and focused her message on issues of war and peace, health care, climate change, and criminal justice reform. She started her political career strongly opposing same-sex marriage, but has since changed her mind and now supports it.
Interesting Facts: She is the first American Samoan and Hindu member of Congress, and she served in Iraq as a member of Hawaii’s National Guard.
Former Position: US Representative of Maryland
Representative John Delaney was a lawyer and entrepreneur before becoming a US Congressman. He represented Maryland’s 6th congressional district from 2013 until earlier this year. He announced his bid for presidency in 2017. What will he be fighting for? Unity, security, better jobs, and justice.
Interesting Fact: Representative Delaney announced his bid for presidency in July 2017, making him the first person to announce his bid for the 2020 presidential race.
Current Position: US Senator of New York
She’s an attorney and served in Congress since 2007. She is currently the US Senator from New York and has held that position since 2009. She announced that she had officially formed an exploratory committee earlier this week. What does she care about? Health care, education, and jobs.
Interesting Fact: Senator Gilibrand announced her presidential bid on a late night television show called The Late Show.
Current Position: Entrepreneur
He’s an entrepreneur who founded Venture for America, an organization that creates jobs in cities. He announced his bid for presidency in November 2017 and believes that universal basic income ($1,000/month for every American adult) is the answer to the job creation crisis in the country.
Interesting Facts: Mr. Yang has a degree in economics, political science, and law. He is the only candidate who has announced with no experience in politics.
Richard Ojeda II (Suspended Campaign)
Former Positions: Retired Army Major and West Virginia State Senator
Richard Ojeda II announced his bid for the 2020 presidential race last November. While he doesn’t currently hold a government office, he’s no stranger to politics. He was the West Virginia State Senator from 2016 until earlier this year, and he was a Major in the army before that. Why is he running for POTUS? He wants to fight for the working class, stand with the unions, and end corruption in Washington, DC. When teachers went on strike in West Virginia last year, he was one of the loudest voices in support of the teachers.
Interesting Fact: In 2016, Ojeda backed Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primaries, but he later backed Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton. He no longer supports President Trump.
Current Position: US Senator of California
Kamala Harris began her career as an attorney and then served as the District Attorney of San Francisco. In 2010, she ran for the position of California’s Attorney General and won. Six years later, she won the election for US Senator of California, becoming only the third woman to ever hold that position. On Monday, January 21st, the day that the country commemorated Martin Luther King, Jr., Harris announced her 2020 presidential bid. Why did she decide to run? In Harris’ words: “Justice. Decency. Equality. Freedom. Democracy. These aren’t just words. They’re the values we as Americans cherish. And they’re all on the line now … The future of our country depends on you and millions of others lifting our voices to fight for our American values.”
Interesting Fact: Harris is half African-American and half Indian-American. When she was elected Attorney General of California in 2010, she became the first African-American and first Asian-American to ever hold that position in California. Earlier this week when a reporter asked what culture she identified herself as, African-American or Indian-American, she laughed and said, “I describe myself as a proud American.”
Current Position: Mayor of South Bend, Indiana
At thirty-seven, Pete Buttigieg is currently the youngest person to announce his intentions of running for President of the United States. He’s a small-town mayor, but his résumé is anything but. He went to Harvard University, was a Rhodes Scholar (an award given to very select students to study at Oxford University), fought in the Afghanistan War, and was elected Mayor of South Bend, Indiana, at the age of twenty-nine. What makes him stand out from the crowd of presidential candidates? He says, “Right now our country needs a fresh start,” and that at thirty-seven years old, he’s the right leader for the growing millennial population. If he wins in 2020, he will be the first openly gay President of the United States and the youngest person to ever hold the position of POTUS.
Interesting Fact: When he was elected Mayor of South Bend, Indiana, in 2011 and then sworn into office in 2012, Buttigieg was the youngest mayor of a city with more than 100,000 residents. He was twenty-nine at the time. He was later re-elected in 2015.
Current Position: US Senator of New Jersey
Before Cory Booker became the first African-American US Senator of New Jersey, he was the Mayor of Newark, New Jersey, from 2006 to 2013. Born in Washington DC but raised in New Jersey, Mr. Booker later attended Stanford and then Yale for law school. Unlike his fellow Democrats who announced their bid for the presidency on mainstream TV shows, Mr. Booker chose to roll out his announcement, focusing on the African-American and Latino communities, as well as on women. How? He called into a radio station whose primary audience is African-American. He also called into Univision, a popular Latino network and conducted his interview almost entirely in Spanish. Later, he appeared on The View, a daytime talk show whose audience largely consists of women. He believes that “the lines that divide us are nowhere near as strong as the ties that bind us. When we join together and work together—we will rise together.”
Interesting Fact: Booker isn’t just a lawyer and a politician; he’s an athlete too! He was offered a football scholarship to Stanford. While there, he played football and worked towards a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a Master’s degree in Sociology.
Current Positions: Author, Lecturer, Activist
Marianne Williamson is the second person without prior political experience to announce a bid for the presidency. Although she has been outspoken about politically-driven topics such as race relations and the Israeli-Palestine conflict, and she even ran for Congress in 2014, she hasn’t held a political office. She announced her presidential bid in late January and says that her “campaign is for people who want to dig deeper into the questions we face as a nation and deeper into finding the answers.”
Interesting Fact: Marianne Williamson has published twelve books, and she counts some of the most well-known celebrities as her fans—Oprah Winfrey considers her a spiritual guru.
Who are some other possible contenders?
Former Vice President Joe Biden
Former Mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg
Texas Congressman Beta O’Rourke
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders
Who would you like to see run for President of the United States in 2020? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts!