Democratic Rep Tulsi Gabbard Running for President in 2020

Tulsi 2020: Hawaii congresswoman says she’s running for president

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) announced her candidacy for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination during an interview with CNN's Van Jones on Friday that will air over the weekend.

"'I have made a decision to run and will be making a formal announcement within the next week", she said on the show, which airs Saturday.

"I'm thinking through how I can best be of service and I'll make my decision based on that", she said.

There is one main issue that is central to the rest, and that is the issue of war and peace.

Who will run her campaign: Rania Batrice, former deputy campaign manager for Bernie Sanders in 2016, will be Gabbard's campaign manager.

"I'm concerned about the direction of the country", Gabbard told host Chris Matthews.

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Gabbard enters a 2020 Democrat primary field which will likely go into double-digits. She opposed the Obama administration's interventions in Syria as being "against America's national security, worldwide credibility, economic interest, and moral center" and has called for putting an end to the Afghanistan war "as soon as possible". Gabbard remains popular with some liberals but will have serious competition with other candidates on the left flank of the party. Bernie Sanders, are now weighing whether to run for president and are expected to announce their decision soon. A year later, she joined the Hawai'i Army National Guard; and in 2004, she volunteered to deploy, becoming the first state official to voluntarily step down from public office to serve in a war zone.

Though considered a rising star in the Democratic Party, Gabbard has displayed an unorthodox approach to progressive leadership. Gabbard didn't use any names, but the description applied to questions asked by Senators Hirono and Harris.

Leading up to the 2016 Democratic primaries, Gabbard served under Democratic National Committee chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz as vice-chairwoman but resigned to fully support Bernie Sanders' campaign.

Gabbard positioned herself as one of President Barack Obama's fiercest critics over his handling of the so-called Islamic State.

"There seems to really be a lack of a coherent strategy with regards to how we, as the United States, are dealing with Iran, as we look at this threat of a nuclear-armed Iran", Gabbard said in one Fox News appearance in 2015. Her 2017 meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar Al-Assad drew widespread criticism. Though Gabbard has been aligned with Trump over some aspects of Middle East policy ― including whether the USA should provide support for Syrian militias fighting Assad ― she recently called Trump "Saudi Arabia's bitch" for his failure to react to the Saudi killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

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