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Everything You Need to Know About Presidential Candidate Tulsi Gabbard

With the announcement of five Democratic women and their 2020 presidential campaigns, it’s hard not to be excited. This could become a norm for oncoming elections, and it should come as no surprise when women begin campaigning for the office of president in the future either.

Tulsi Gabbard announced her campaign on January 11, 2019, from her current role as a U.S. representative for Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District, where she has been actively serving since 2013.

“She has approached every issue through the lens of what will best serve the American people, secure our country and promote peace,” according to her website.

Also on her campaign website, Gabbard portrays herself as committed to service, both for our planet and country. Gabbard mentions her service in the Hawaii Army National Guard, and how she volunteered for deployment with the 29th Brigade Combat Team in Iraq when she found out her “her brothers and sisters were [being] sent off to war.”

Gabbard’s campaign website also mentions her involvement in co-founding the Healthy Hawaii Coalition where she created and starred as ‘WaterWoman.’

This research into Gabbard brought up her previous anti-gay sentiments and anti-gay activism. Gabbard’s involvement with anti-gay activism was when she worked for her father’s anti-gay organization, The Alliance for Traditional Marriage, which opposed pro-gay lawmakers and legislation while supporting conversion therapy.

Gabbard’s anti-gay beliefs continued when her mother ran for Hawaii’s state board of education, where Gabbard is quoted on the Alliance for Traditional Marriage stating, "this war of deception and hatred against my mom is being waged by homosexual activists because they know, that if elected, she will not allow them to force their values down the throats of the children in our schools.”

Those beliefs continued through her career as a state representative and her first apology came in 2012 when she ran for U.S. Congress.

"I want to apologize for statements that I have made in the past that have been very divisive and even disrespectful to those within the LGBT community," Gabbard said of her past statements and remarks. "I know that those comments have been hurtful and I sincerely offer my apology to you and hope that you will accept it."

Gabbard’s presidential campaign has also received public support from David Duke, a former Grand Wizard of the KKK and white nationalist, who she immediately denounced. Gabbard told multiple news outlets that she has “strongly denounced David Duke’s hateful views and his so-called ‘support’ multiple times in the past, and reject his support.”

Duke’s support of Gabbard appears to come from her campaign intended to “end regime change wars and instead focus our military efforts on defeating the terrorist groups that attacked and declared war on the United States.”

While Tulsi Gabbard wants to end what is perceived as pointless wars, focus on becoming a greener country and harnessing in climate change, it will be interesting to see if Democrats can get passed her previous opposition to LGBTQ+ rights.

Ciara is a freshman at West Virginia University from Minerva, Ohio. She is studying Journalism but is unsure which avenue she'd like to pursue. Ciara enjoys to read, dance, work-out, and swim. She also likes complaining about the stairs she endeavors walking to class. While writing for HerCampus, she hopes to gain valuable experience and friendships that will last her a lifetime. Outside of HerCampus, Ciara also dedicates time writing for the Daily Athenaeum as a news reporter.
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