Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Says She’s Running for President

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard D-Hawaii greets supporters Tuesday Nov. 6 2018 in Honolulu

Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii has announced that she is running for president in 2020.

Gabbard, an Iraq War veteran, now serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

CNN reports that Gabbard will announce her plans to seek the White House on Saturday's edition of The Van Jones Show, which is slated to air at 7 p.m.

"There are a lot of reasons for me to make this decision", Gabbard said. Gabbard said health care access, criminal justice reform and climate change would be central to her message, but cited one factor as paramount, asserting, "There is one main issue that is central to the rest, and that is the issue of war and peace". "I look forward to being able to get into this and to talk about it in depth when we make our announcement".

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said Friday she will run for president in 2020.

In 2016, Gabbard resigned as Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), after endorsing Bernie Sanders for president.

"I stepped down from the legislature where I served, and headed to a war zone", Gabbard recalled at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. She served in a medical unit of the Hawaii National Guard and was deployed in Kuwait and Iraq.

In 2010, she returned to office as a member of the Hawaii City Council.

Foreign policy is an issue where Gabbard has staked out somewhat controversial positions.

Due to her antiwar stance in Syria, Gabbard was at one point rumored to be a potential candidate to head Trump's State Department, and even met with the president-elect at Trump Tower in November 2016, but nothing came of it.

She said she doesn't regret the trip and considers it important to meet with adversaries if "you are serious about pursuing peace". She questioned whether he was responsible for a chemical attack on civilians that killed dozens and led the U.S.to attack a Syrian air base.

The congresswoman also made surprising allies on the right, appearing on Fox News and at events organized by the American Enterprise Institute to criticize the Obama administration's foreign policy in ways that raised some Democratic eyebrows.

Gabbard joins a quickly growing field of Democrats eager to take on President Donald Trump for the presidency. In her stint in Hawaii politics, Gabbard opposed the state's legalization of civil unions for same-sex couples, saying at one forum that Democrats "should be representing the views of the people, not a small number of homosexual extremists". "It is long overdue that we end USA complicity in Saudi Arabia's atrocities", Gabbard said of the hot button issue.

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