Though the next presidential election isn’t for another 644 days (!!!), the field of nominees is already getting crowded. Here is the BUST lowdown everyone running (and even some who might be running) thus far:
Mayor Pete Buttigieg: This past week, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg officially announced he was running for president. If Buttigieg were to win the nomination, he would be the first openly gay presidential candidate. He would also be the youngest president in history if elected (he is only 37). He was elected mayor of South Bend in 2011, when he was just 29 years old, which made him the youngest mayor of a city with a population larger than 100,000 people. He officially came out in 2015 and was easily re-elected that same year, with more than 80 percent of the vote, as reported by FiveThirtyEight. Buttigieg is also a veteran, who “took a seven-month leave of office to serve with the Naval Reserve in Afghanistan in 2015.” He is a Harvard grad and a former Rhodes Scholar.
Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro: Castro was a cabinent member in the Obama administration, as well as former mayor of San Antonio. Issues that would be focal points of his platform are climate change, universal health care, and universal Pre-K. He would also be the first Latino nominee.
Rep. John Delaney (D-MD): John Delaney has been running since 2017, having recently wrapped up his 20th visit to Iowa. He has been described as more of a moderate, though he has supported progressive positions such as a $15 minimum wage and carbon-tax legislation. His campaign has been focusing on his blue-collar background and business experience.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI): Like Mayor Buttigieg, Gabbard is one of the younger nominees in the field. She is also an Iraq War veteran and the first Hindu member of Congress. She is known as an economic progressive who backed Bernie Sanders in 2016, however, she has been a figure of controversy for her work against LGBTQ equality as recently as 2004, working for organizations that support conversion therapy and voting against anti-bullying measures. She has also come under fire for meeting with Syrian president Bashar al-Assad in 2017.
Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA): Only two years into her Senate term, Harris has already made a name for herself. She's been noted for her sharp questioning of Brett Kavanaugh and her support for policies like Medicare for All. More recently, she has stated her support for a Green New Deal.
Andrew Yang: An entrepeneur whose main campaign promise is a Universal Basic Income, which he describes as "a set of guaranteed payments of $1,000 per month, or $12,000 per year, to all U.S. citizens over the age of 18."
While senators Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand technically have yet to make the official announcement, they have formed exploratory committees, which is legally the same thing as entering into the race, as they are still beholden to certain FEC regulations. Other big names, such as Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, have signaled that they might run for president as well.
Not everyone who might be running is a Democrat, however. Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz recently tweeted that he is “seriously considering running for president as an independent centrist.” This is somewhat surprising, considering that Schultz has also described himself as a “lifelong Democrat.”
Schultz went on 60 Minutes this past Sunday to talk about his rationale for his potential decision, citing his belief in “the fact that both parties are consistently not doing what's necessary on behalf of the American people and are engaged, every single day, in revenge politics.” While he supports fairer immigration policies and climate change reform, he breaks with many Democrats by not supporting universal health care.
Trump is so far running unnopposed. Former Ohio governor John Kasich has contemplated challenging his nomination, telling ABC News this past November that he was "seriously considering it," but he has yet to make a formal announcement.
It will be a loooong time before we finally narrow the field of prospective nominees. We here at BUST look forward to keeping you updated for the next 644 days!
Top image: peteforamerica.com
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Emma Davey is a blog editor for BUST. She recently earned a B.A. in politics and gender, sexuality, and feminist studies from Oberlin College. She is originally from Houston and worships Beyoncé accordingly. You can follow her on Twitter @navel_gazerr if you want to hear her rant about things.