By: Emma Botelho (Correspondent)
Democratic candidates are scrambling to build their platforms and gain name recognition in time for the 2020 primaries.
The primaries will take place on July 13th through 16th in 2020. Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Pete Buttigeig have announced that they will be running for the election, and they all have the same goal— to unseat Republican President Trump.
“I’m running to fight for an America where no mother or father has to teach their young son that people may stop him, arrest him, chase him or kill him because of his race,” said California Senator Kamala Harris when she announced her candidacy on January 27th.
Harris, the first South-Asian American senator in American history, says she plans to work for racial equality in our country. She says that America is divided and that unity is necessary for change. The Criminal Justice system is “deeply flawed and in need of repair,” Harris has gone on record as opposing to the death penalty.
SHS Alumna Tamar Stollman says Kamala Harris is great because “she supports the Green New Deal, which is an environmental protection plan that would create sustainable jobs!” The deal would make the United States carbon neutral.
“Climate change is an existential threat and we have got to deal with the reality of it,” said Harris.
Another candidate, New York senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a supporter of gender equality, announced her candidacy on January 15. “You have to start by restoring what’s been lost, restoring our leadership in the world,” said Gillibrand during her campaign announcement.
She will campaign about the issues related to gender inequality, institutionalized racism, healthcare, and education. “I know that I have the compassion, the courage, and the fearless determination to get that done,” she said.
“She probably is a more seasoned politician and thus would not only be a better candidate but would probably be a better president,” said SHS Freshman Rowan Gray, calling Gillibrand a “rising star.”
“I belong to a generation that is stepping forward right now,” said Pete Buttigeig, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, who announced his candidacy for president in late December. He seeks to be the first openly gay president, and wants his youth to be a fresh mindset for the country.
“We’re the generation that lived through school shootings, that served in the wars after 9/11, and we’re the generation that stands to be the first to make less than our parents unless we do something different,” said Buttegeig. We can’t just polish off a system so broken. It is a season for boldness and a focus on the future.”
“He doesn’t have the experience required or name recognition for him to be able to actually win,” said SHS Sophomore Rahem Hamid. Buttegeig also wants to connect with young voters. He says he has no specific political plans yet, but will have them by the end of 2019.
“I think that right now our country needs not a radicalized candidate… but a candidate with a more centrist and bipartisan message,” said Gray.
“I am not interested in any candidate that is for protecting the wealthy and their privilege,” said SHS Social Studies Coordinator, Mr. Chuck Fazzio. “I would also like to see a candidate that truly cares about the middle class and the working poor.”
New candidates are throwing their names into the race everyday, and the competition has only just begun.