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Still don’t know who to vote for? There are eight major Democratic presidential candidates left. In this article, I’ll go through five of eight candidates and their stances, including some specific policy points that each candidate has promised in a previous debate.

Joe Biden

The former vice president, considered a centrist, has promised free community college tuition and universal pre-K, while also aiming to significantly increase the funding for Title I schools (schools with a lot of students from low-income families).

On the environment, Biden has promised to rejoin the Paris Agreement and increase the number of charging stations for electric vehicles. Increases for offshore wind and investments in alternative energy in general would be seen under a Biden administration, as well. The United States’ standing on the international stage would be more aggressive to nations violating human rights under Biden, as he has called for tougher stances on China, North Korea and Saudi Arabia. Biden would also withdraw all troops, with the exception of special forces, from Afghanistan.

Biden is for a public option when it comes to healthcare (as opposed to mandated universal healthcare) and favors setting a national price cap for certain medications. On the issue of recreational cannabis, he would expunge (get rid of) the sentences of people already convicted of cannabis-related crimes. He opposes the policies of some fellow candidates to reform the Supreme Court, opting to retain the current number of justices.

Pete Buttigieg

A former mayor of South Bend, Ind., Buttigieg is also considered a centrist. On education, he isn’t as progressive as Biden, calling for affordable, but not free, college for families earning under a certain amount per year. Buttigieg would increase funding for Pell grants (federal grant for college students from low-income families), HBCUs (historically black colleges and universities) and teachers’ pay.

Buttigieg is a reformist when it comes to elections. He would push for D.C. statehood and make Election Day a federal holiday. To increase voter turnout, he has promised to introduce automatic voter registration nationwide. The Electoral College would not be a thing under a Buttigieg administration.

A former veteran, Buttigieg favors withdrawing all troops from Afghanistan within one year of his presidency and would introduce a renewable three-year deadline for all foreign troop deployments.

Amy Klobuchar

Sen. Klobuchar of Minn., like Biden and Buttigieg, is a centrist. On the environment, Klobuchar has promised to rejoin the Paris Agreement, invest $1 trillion on green infrastructure, and introduce carbon pricing. She is for an assault weapons ban and magazine limitations, as well as a universal background check on firearms purchases.

She is for a public option when it comes to healthcare. Klobuchar has promised to allow federal funding for Planned Parenthood and wants to make the Roe v. Wade decision law. Three months of parental leave would be introduced under a Klobuchar administration.

The senator is an electoral reformer. Klobuchar would institute a national policy allowing non-violent felons to vote and would also introduce automatic voter registration. The Citizens United decision by the Supreme Court would be overturned by a constitutional amendment under her presidency.

Bernie Sanders

The progressive senator from Vermont is known for his bold healthcare stance, a universal system he calls ‘Medicare for All.’ But Sanders has other, lesser-known policy stances that don’t get as much attention.

If not healthcare, Sanders supporters would vote for him for his education policy, which calls for tuition-free colleges across the board, the elimination of student debt and an increase in Title I schools funding. He has vigorously opposed the USMCA (US-Mexico-Canada Agreement), a new trade deal among the three nations that replaces NAFTA, on the basis that the agreement doesn’t address environmental concerns. Sanders has promised to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan within one year of his presidency.

On immigration, Sanders would extend college and healthcare policies to undocumented immigrants. DACA, the immigration policy introduced under fmr. Pres. Obama to allow children of undocumented immigrants to live, learn, and work in the US, would be reinstated. A Sanders presidency would push for a path to citizenship for all 12 million undocumented immigrants.

Elizabeth Warren

Though not as left of center as Sanders, Warren is still considered a progressive Democrat. Her campaign has largely focused on ‘rooting out corruption,’ and her policies reflect that focus. Under Warren, big companies like Facebook would be broken up to prevent monopolization of the economy. A wealth tax for people making over $50 million would also be imposed in a Warren administration.

On education, Warren sides with Sanders, calling for tuition-free colleges across the board. Warren has promised to increase Pell grant funding and funding for HBCUs, as well as institute universal pre-K like Biden. Warren opposes the construction of new nuclear power plants, but would invest trillions of dollars into other green energy research.

Like Sanders, Warren favors universal healthcare, as well as universal childcare. She would introduce a new policy that would make undocumented immigration a civil offense rather than a criminal offense and has called for a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

Political science major
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