Over 20 Democratic presidential hopefuls are attempting to remove President Donald Trump from the White House in 2020.
Getting to Know Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) would not become the first President of the United States from Hawaii if she ascends to the Oval Office because former President Barack Obama already has that distinction.
But Rep. Gabbard could become the first woman and first person of Samoan descent elected as President of the United States.
The war veteran and moderate hopes that the country can move away from identity politics and focus on what’s best for America despite political differences.
“When I was deployed, I was deployed with people from different political parties, different religions, races, ethnicities, but we stood together working as one, focused on that singular mission that we have as service members of serving our country and protecting the American people,” Gabbard said.
“And it is those ideals that are the foundation of who we are as Americans, but I think we can, and we should all agree on, and that can be the starting point for us to begin to rebuild these bridges and say, you and I may disagree on some things, but I think that our love for our country and our love for each other and for our future is the most important foundation for us to be able to unite as a country.”
While many of her Democratic presidential opponents have very liberal agendas, Gabbard’s pro-God, pro-gun message is one that might resonate with some conservatives.
Her moderate views might steal some Independent voters from President Donald Trump who might not like his racist rhetoric, such as demanding that four congresswomen of color go back to where they came from, despite all four being United States citizens and only one being born outside of the country.
Gabbard said, “The president is inciting racism and violence in our country as a whole, this is what’s so dangerous about what he’s doing. He’s using his platform to incite this racism and bigotry.
“When President Trump says he’s saying love it or leave it, right, what he’s really saying is, love me or leave, he’s making it about himself. Saying that…you disagree with Trump, you disagree with his views, then you should leave, then you don’t belong here.
“I think that’s really what’s so dangerous, is he is seeing himself as America rather than recognizing the fundamental values of our country are based on our freedom of speech.”
Gabbard is passionate about several key issues including protecting the environment, ending regime-changing wars and ending the nuclear cold war.
Serving two tours in the Middle East, Gabbard along with Tammy Duckworth, became the first female veterans in history elected to the United States Congress.
She now serves as a major in the United States Army National Guard.
Gabbard has served four terms in Congress, working on the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Armed Services Committee for six years.
Her love and respect for the environment probably stems from her upbringing.
Growing up in Hawaii, Gabbard’s parents would make her and her siblings participate in “service days” in which they would clean up litter from the beach or prepare food for the homeless citizens of their hometown.
That initial feel of service made Gabbard want to dedicate her life to helping others and saving the planet.
While in high school, the future presidential candidate co-founded the organization Healthy Hawaii Coalition in which she would speak to elementary schools about the importance of protecting the land and the water.
Even at a young age, she wanted to do more to help her home state of Hawaii.
Therefore at 21-years-old, Gabbard won a seat in the Hawaii State House of Representatives.
Like so many patriots at the beginning of the 21st century, Gabbard felt a need to serve her country after the vicious terrorist attacks on Sept. 11.
She joined the Army National Guard to protect Hawaii in the time of need and also to go after terrorists who attacked America.
After volunteering to serve in Iraq instead of campaigning for office in Hawaii, Gabbard came face to face everyday with the harsh realities of war and the realization that any day could end in her demise.
She questioned whether politicians who voted for war knew how harsh war really was?
Therefore, she vowed never to support war if she did not know the real reason behind the war and the country’s strategy, mission and purpose behind the conflict.
Instead of fighting wars to change regimes, Gabbard supports going after specific terrorist groups who have attacked the United States.
She believes regime wars have bankrupted America and adversely impacted our moral standing throughout the world.
As a United States congresswoman, Gabbard has invested in infrastructure and a green energy economy.
Despite not having the name recognition of some of her Democratic adversaries, after the second debates her name has entered the fray of real contenders.
Gabbard criticized Sen. Kamala Harris’ record on criminal justice at the Democratic debate in Detroit on Wednesday.
“Senator Harris says she’s proud of her record as a prosecutor and that she’ll be a prosecutor president,” Gabbard said. “But I’m deeply concerned about this record. There are too many examples to cite but she put over 1,500 people in jail for marijuana violations and then laughed about it when she was asked if she ever smoked marijuana.
“She blocked evidence—she blocked evidence that would have freed an innocent man from death row until the courts forced her to do so. She kept people in prison beyond their sentences to use them as cheap labor for the state of California.”
That comment put Gabbard on the map in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Only time will tell if it translates to a history-making election.