AI News, 2020 Presidential Contenders Who Will Challenge Trump So Far ... artificial intelligence

Andrew Yang

Initially considered a long-shot candidate, he gained significant momentum in early 2019 following appearances on several popular shows and podcasts.

Yang's signature policy is what he calls the 'Freedom Dividend', a universal basic income (UBI) in the form of $1,000 monthly for every American adult over age 18.

Yang believes that UBI is a necessary response to the rapid development of automation, which is increasingly leading to workforce challenges, and that job displacement by automation is what led to Donald Trump's election in 2016.

After working in the healthcare industry for four years, Yang left MMF Systems to join his friend Zeke Vanderhoek at a small test preparation company, Manhattan Prep.

Following the acquisition of Manhattan Prep in late 2009, Yang began to work on creating a new nonprofit fellowship program, Venture for America (VFA), which he founded in 2011 with the mission 'to create economic opportunity in American cities by mobilizing the next generation of entrepreneurs and equipping them with the skills and resources they need to create jobs'.[12][20][21][22]

VFA's strategy was to recruit the nation's top college graduates into a two-year fellowship program in which they would work for and apprentice at promising startups in developing cities across the United States.

Yang's book Smart People Should Build Things (2014) argues that the top universities in the country cherry-pick the smartest kids out of small towns and funnel them into the same corporate jobs in the same big cities.[24]

His campaign supporters, known informally as the Yang Gang, have brought attention to his campaign on Reddit, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social media platforms, through the use of memes and viral campaigning.[52][53]

Central to Yang's campaign is the proposal of a monthly $1,000 'Freedom Dividend' to all U.S. citizens over the age of 18 (a form of universal basic income, or UBI) in response to worker displacement driven by technological automation.[57][58]

He argues that the problem of automation-driven job displacement is the main reason Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election, stating that based on data, 'There's a straight line up between the adoption of industrial robots in a community and the movement towards Donald Trump.'[61]

Yang has said that he became an advocate of a UBI after reading American futurist Martin Ford's book Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future, which deals with the impact of automation and artificial intelligence on the job market and economy.[62]

He believes UBI is a more viable policy than job retraining programs, citing studies that job retraining of displaced manufacturing workers in the Midwest had success rates of 0–15%.[63]

He supports legislation banning discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and has pledged to appoint pro-choice judges.[74]

An article in The New York Times described various new policies Yang proposes, such as a department focused on regulating the addictive nature of media, a White House psychologist, making Election Day a national holiday, and, to stem corruption, increasing the salaries of federal regulators but limiting their private work after they leave public service.[75]

[...] we need to expand sanctions against Russia, and Putin and members of his government specifically through the Global Magnitsky Act, in order to pressure the country to play by international rules.'[77]

On March 11, 2019, Yang announced that he surpassed the fundraising threshold of 65,000 donors, qualifying him to participate in the first round of Democratic primary debates.[39]

On August 17, Yang announced that among his campaign donors, 'the most common jobs are software engineers, teachers, drivers, retail workers and warehouse workers' and the 'biggest employer is the US Army'.[116]

In the 72 hours after the third debate, Yang's campaign raised $1 million, suggesting that it 'is on track to raise significantly more in the third quarter' than in the second quarter, according to Politico.[118]

As of June 28, 2019, Yang had received donations from more than 130,000 individual donors in at least 20 U.S. states, thereby meeting at least one of the requirements to be included in the first and second debates for Democratic presidential primary candidates, as well as the donor requirement for the third and fourth debates.[119]

During the second debate in Detroit on July 31, Yang answered questions on topics including civil rights, healthcare, immigration, party strategy, climate, and the economy.[126][127]

Instead of talking about automation and our future, including the fact that we automated away 4 million manufacturing jobs—hundreds of thousands right here in Michigan—we're up here with makeup on our faces and our rehearsed attack lines, playing roles in this reality TV show.

According to Yang, there 'is this sense of manufactured outrage and rehearsed attack lines', and as 'a proxy for the American public', he finds 'the process to be very false and somewhat misdirected'.[134]

Some campaign-finance experts have questioned using campaign funds for payments such as Yang promised in his opening statement, on the grounds that federal law bars personal use of campaign funds.[142]

On September 13, tech entrepreneur Justin Sun pledged to give $1.2 million to 100 Americans in 2020, saying that he wanted 'Yang to help him select the recipients'.[145]

In the 72 hours after the debate, Yang's campaign raised $1 million and collected 'more than 450,000 email addresses from people who entered the online raffle', of which over 90% were new email addresses.[118]

On August 29, 2019, Yang supporters prompted the hashtag #YangMediaBlackout to trend on Twitter after a CNN infographic displaying the results of a poll included Democratic candidate Beto O'Rourke but not Yang, even though the poll showed Yang polling three times higher than O'Rourke.

Yang supporters also criticized media outlets for providing disproportionately low coverage of Yang, pointing out that according to The New York Times, Yang has received some of the least coverage in cable news among the candidates, even though he was polling better than most of the field.[149][150][151]

He has spoken about his older son being autistic, saying, 'I'm very proud of my son and anyone who has someone on the spectrum in their family feels the exact same way.'[157]

House Speaker Pelosi announces formal impeachment inquiry of Trump

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took the extraordinary step Tuesday of initiating impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump, accusing him of violating the Constitution in seeking help from a foreign leader to damage a political opponent.

Pelosi’s move came after Trump acknowledged that he urged the Ukrainian president to investigate former vice president Joe Biden, a contender for the Democratic presidential nomination who holds a wide lead over Trump, polls show, in a potential general election matchup.

“The actions of the Trump presidency have revealed the dishonorable fact of the president’s betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of our national security and betrayal of the integrity of our elections,”

Pelosi and many in her Democratic caucus had resisted calls for impeachment from the party’s liberal base and several of the 2020 presidential candidates, citing the absence of public support and GOP backing.

But over seven days, the revelations that the president sought the help of Zelensky to investigate Biden infuriated Democrats, particularly lawmakers with national security credentials.

Trump insisted he had nothing to do with his administration’s refusal to share with Congress an intelligence community whistleblower complaint about his actions, according to individuals familiar with the call who spoke on the condition of anonymity to frankly describe the conversation.

“Instead of working together across party lines on legislation to help American families and strengthen our nation, they will descend even deeper into their obsession with re-litigating 2016.”

Brad Parscale, his 2020 campaign manager, said in a statement Tuesday that “the misguided Democrat impeachment strategy is meant to appease their rabid, extreme, leftist base, but will only serve to embolden and energize President Trump’s supporters and create a landslide victory for the President.”

In a statement, the Congressional Leadership Fund, a PAC dedicated to helping House Republicans, said, “Democrats feeling euphoric in the moment, will awaken to a nightmarish hangover when they’re forced to defend their decision to their constituents back home.”

Before Pelosi made her announcement Tuesday, the speaker and her leadership team briefly considered the creation of a select committee to conduct the inquiry, with some in leadership questioning whether the House Judiciary Committee was up to the task.

The House plans to vote Wednesday on a resolution condemning the administration’s efforts to block the release of the whistleblower complaint alleging that Trump’s promise to a foreign leader constituted an “urgent concern”

In a rare, albeit subtle protest from the GOP-led Senate, lawmakers adopted a resolution on Tuesday calling for the White House to turn over the complaint to the intelligence committees, as is required under law.

Biden on Tuesday called for Congress to begin impeachment of Trump if the White House continues to stonewall congressional investigations, including questions regarding reports that Trump asked the Ukrainian president to investigate Biden and his son, Hunter.

Omar Rules Out Biden for 2020, Says He Won’t ‘Tackle Systematic Challenges’

Representative Ilhan Omar over the weekend rejected Joe Biden’s presidential candidacy, saying he is not the candidate the Democratic Party needs at this moment in time.

The Minnesota Democrat emphasized the party’s need for a more progressive nominee and suggested the former vice president wouldn’t elicit enthusiasm from the electorate during her remarks at the Iowa People’s Presidential Forum on Saturday.

“I think it has been very clear to many of the people who have been creating the kind of movement that is exciting generations, that we want somebody who really has a plan that is going to tackle a lot of the systematic challenges that we have, and he doesn’t,” the congresswoman said.