The Democrats have a big field of candidates running for President in 2020. To briefly use a sports analogy, I see our candidates as the starting players on the Blue team, each bringing their own unique strengths to the table in a bid to take our country in a very different direction than the one we’re on today.
But as we well know from 2016, the media (and especially social media) gets fixated on non-substantial issues that take up all the oxygen. Plus, they don’t give the candidates the same treatment or the same amount of airtime.
In order to help voters get to know the Democratic candidates, I’ve enlisted the help of a team of terrific volunteers who have helped gather quotes and information about what the candidates have said or done in regards to the 7 issues that midterm voters identified as the most important. I hope that these guides serve as a helpful starting point for you as you look into which candidates (or how many candidates!) you are interested in supporting in their bid to become our next President.
Today, let’s get to know Amy Klobuchar!
✦ Current Senator from Minnesota
✦ Former County Attorney in Hennepin County (MN)
✦ Former partner at Dorsey & Whitney and Gray Plant Mooty
Affordable Healthcare: “Now, we all know as I said the day it passed, that the Affordable Care Act was a beginning and not an end. You cannot pass a major piece of legislation like that without making changes over time. … For one, we know that we must bring some certainty to the exchanges, stabilize the market. … Another, it is long past time that we do something about the rising costs of prescription drugs.” Source
Women’s Health: Klobuchar was the lead sponsor of the EARLY Act of 2014, to reauthorize the Young Women’s Breast Health Education and Awareness Requires Learning Young Act of 2009. Source
Drug Prices: “To bring down prescription drug costs, I have introduced multiple pieces of legislation that would expand access to cost-saving generic drugs, deter pharmaceutical companies from blocking cheaper generic alternatives, allow personal importation of more affordable drugs from Canada, and lift the ban that prohibits Medicare from negotiating for the best possible price of prescription drugs on behalf of the 43 million seniors in Medicare Part D.” Source
Medicare for All: Klobuchar sees Medicare-for-All as a “possibility” down the line and thinks pursuing a “public option” could be a more immediate alternative. Klobuchar cited her support for a bill from Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) that would enable states to give all residents the ability to buy into Medicaid. Source
Mental Health: On the Mental Health Parity Act of 2007: “Receiving medical treatment is a life-or-death issue for the 54 million Americans with mental illness. This legislation can relieve unnecessary suffering and even save lives by guaranteeing people fair and equal access to the mental health and chemical dependency treatment they need.” Source
Pro-Choice: Klobuchar has a 100% rating from NARAL, based on her voting record. Source
Opioid Crisis: “I’m also working to combat the opioid crisis and ensure that communities have the resources they need for prevention and treatment. I led three bipartisan bills that were signed into law as part of legislation to address the opioid epidemic in October of 2018.” Source
Paris Climate Accord: Klobuchar has stated that she would have the U.S. rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. Source In November 2018, Klobuchar was one of 25 Democratic senators to cosponsor a resolution in response to findings of the Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change report and National Climate Assessment. The resolution affirmed the senators’ acceptance of the findings and their support for bold action to address climate change. Source
Green New Deal: ““I think they are aspirations. I think we can get close. I don’t think we are going to get rid of entire industries in the US. This is put out there, as an aspiration, in that it’s something that we need to move toward. Do I think we could cross every ‘t’ and dot every ‘i’ in 10 years? Actually, I think that would be very difficult to do.” Source
New Energy: “We must commit ourselves to protecting our environment and preserving our natural resources for generations to come. We also need to chart a new energy future – one that creates jobs, reduces our dependence on foreign oil, increases domestic energy production, keeps energy costs affordable for all Americans, and responds to the challenges of global climate change.” Source
Climate Legislation: Klobuchar was a lead sponsor of America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018, an Act to provide for improvements to the rivers and harbors of the United States, to provide for the conservation and development of water and related resources, to provide for water pollution control activities, and for other purposes. Source
Carbon Reduction: In December 2014, Klobuchar was one of six Democratic senators to sign a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency urging the agency to give states more time to comply with its rule on power plants as the final rule “must provide adequate time for the design, permitting and construction of such large scale capital intensive infrastructure” and calling for an elimination of the 2020 targets in the final rule, a mandate that states take action by 2020 as part of the EPA’s goal to reach a 30 percent carbon cut by 2030. Source
Environmental Record: Klobuchar has a 95% rating from the League of Conservation Voters, based on her voting record. Source
LGBTQ Rights: The Human Rights Campaign endorsed Klobuchar for Senate saying, “Throughout her career, Amy Klobuchar has been a leading advocate for equality in the U.S. Senate. Senator Klobuchar is fighting tirelessly on behalf of the LGBTQ community, Minnesota, and the American people.” Source
Marriage Equality: “America is a nation founded on equality for all people and today the Supreme Court took a major step toward advancing that equality. I was a cosponsor of the bill to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and the Court’s decision to strike it down is a true victory for those who have fought so hard for this day.” Source
Elder Abuse: Klobuchar was a lead sponsor of the Elder Abuse Prevention and Prosecution Act, which passed in 2017. Source
Equal Rights Amendment: Klobuchar was a co-sponsor of a resolution to remove the deadline for the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. Source
Disability Rights: “I helped lead the push in Congress to successfully pass bipartisan legislation called the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act — a law that will help people with disabilities and their families better plan for their futures. The reality is that people with disabilities and their families face many challenges, and their expenses can add up in a hurry.” Source
Human Trafficking: Klobuchar was a lead sponsor of the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act, which passed in 2015. Source
Closing Loopholes: “Klobuchar has also worked to close the so-called “boyfriend loophole” in federal gun violence legislation. Current federal domestic violence firearm prohibitions only apply to “intimate partners” which does not include dating partners a victim has not lived with, had a child with, or been married to. … Klobuchar’s efforts have been instrumental in protecting all victims at risk of gun violence from intimate partners.” Source
Background checks: She has emphasized the need for stronger background checks that flag those who have a history of domestic abuse or have been investigated for terrorism. Source
Assault Weapons: She has supported a ban on assault weapons and bump stocks. Source
2nd Amendment: “Change to the nation’s gun laws can take place while still respecting the Second Amendment, Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar said. … ‘In fact, when you read Justice [Antonin] Scalia’s opinion from the Supreme Court about how that amendment applies to individuals, he actually wrote in there that you can have safety rules and regulations.'” Source
Hunting: 2006: “In terms of legal guns, I would do nothing to hurt hunting. We spend $50 million per year on fishing and hunting — it’s an important part of our culture and economy in Minnesota. I do not see a need right now for a bunch of new laws on guns that would effect people who are out their hunting, or out there legally with guns.” Source
Voter ID: Klobuchar is not in favor of restrictive Voter ID laws. Source
Barriers for Seniors: Klobuchar was the co-author of a study that looked at the many voting barriers that older Americans face. The report also recommended steps to fixing the issues. Source
Restoring the Voting Rights Act: “I am also an original cosponsor of legislation that would update the Voting Rights Act.” Source
Election Security: “In 2017, she introduced legislation designed to increase transparency in online election advertising. It would put more online communications under the purview of election law, and require social media companies to keep more information about who buys what advertisements and who they target.” Source
Voter Rolls: In June 2018, Klobuchar and Sherrod Brown introduced the Save Voters Act, a bill that would serve as an amendment to the National Voter Registration Act while asserting that a state cannot use an individual’s failure to vote or respond to a state notice as reason for removing them from voter rolls. Source
Expanding Voting Rights: Klobuchar has tried to pass legislation that would allow voters in every state to register on the day of an election. Source
Modernizing Elections: “On December 21, 2017, Klobuchar was one of six senators to introduce the Secure Elections Act, legislation authorizing block grants to states to update outdated voting technology as well as form a program for an independent panel of experts that would work toward the development of cybersecurity guidelines for election systems that states could then implement, along with offering states resources to install the recommendations.” Source
Taxes: “We need tax reform for all, not one that cuts Trump family’s taxes by $1.1 billion, gives 50% of benefits to top 1%. How about a new plan?” Source Klobuchar supports tax reform that would simplify the tax code, fund infrastructure and give incentives for businesses to keep jobs in the U.S. Source
Minimum Wage: “There’s no question about it — the federal minimum wage must be increased to $15 an hour.” Source
Equal Pay: In 2014, Klobuchar released a report on women’s wages and retirement security. “This report clearly shows that lower wages impact women not just during their working years, but straight through retirement. Passing the Paycheck Fairness Act and other policies to help close the pay gap are important for women and their families, but they’re also critical to ensuring the strength of our entire economy.” Source
Women & Entrepreneurship: Klobuchar was the lead sponsor of the Promoting Women in Entrepreneurship Act (in partnership with the National Science Foundation), which passed in 2017. Source
Jobs: To improve the economy, she supports education geared toward invention and entrepreneurship, emphasizing exports and committing resources to federal and private sector research and development. Source
Changing Workforce: “The American workforce is changing & there isn’t just one path to success. There are good jobs that need to be filled — we just need to create and expand apprenticeship and skills training programs to get people the right training.” Source
Russia: “What we want is to have elections that are fair, and we don’t want them hacked into by a foreign country. You think of everything that Russia did in 2016 – not just the hacking but also the social media and influencing our election. This is not a partisan issue. This is about America’s democracy, and a strong democracy is good for everyone.” Source
North Korea: “I believe these sanctions are incredibly important; we can’t have North Korea begin to be some kind of weapons factory. … But one of the things that went wrong here is that these multilateral discussions broke down, North Korea walked away from the table, and I believe we have to keep talking. It’s good that China’s part of this, but if it’s moving in the right direction and if we believe it’s in our national security interests, we should be talking to them directly. I mean, even during the Cold War we kept talking to Russia. And so the discussions are important, and we need to keep the diplomatic pressure on.” Source
China: In October 2016, Klobuchar was one of 12 senators to sign a letter to President Obama urging his administration “to consider all options for increasing China’s compliance with its international trade obligations, including a potential case brought with our allies at the World Trade Organization and a pause of other trade negotiations with China, such as the Bilateral Investment Treaty talk.” Source
Iran: In May 2018, Klobuchar was one of 12 senators to sign a letter to President Trump urging him to remain in the Iran nuclear deal on the grounds that “Iran could either remain in the agreement and seek to isolate the United States from our closest partners, or resume its nuclear activities” if the US pulled out and that both possibilities “would be detrimental to our national security interests.” Source
Saudi Arabia: “I’ve already voted to oppose Saudi military sales based on human rights violations. There will be strong bipartisan opposition if in fact they murdered an innocent journalist.” Source
Legislative Record (includes enacted legislation & bills sponsored): Amy Klobuchar
Campaign website: Amy for America
Check out all of our 7 Issues Guides: Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Julian Castro, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Kirsten Gillibrand, Jay Inslee, John Hickenlooper, Beto O’Rourke, Bernie Sanders, John Delaney, Joe Biden, Eric Swalwell
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Categories: 2020 Candidates
Reblogged this on Filosofa's Word and commented:
Today I present the second of TokyoSand’s excellent posts introducing us to the democratic candidates for the office of president in 2020. Last time we met Senator Kamala Harris who is one of 4 or 5 on my own shortlist, and this week we are introduced to Senator Amy Klobuchar, another on my short list. This is an excellent series providing valuable information about the candidates all in one place, so I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read it. Thank you again, TokyoSand, for this post and permission to share it!
Thanks for sharing the post, Jill!
My pleasure! You are saving me hours of research!!! If there’s anything I can do to help you with this project, just let me know.
As I just commented on Jill’s side of this post, I’d be inclined to Senator Amy Klobuchar serious consideration if it were not for her reputation for being abusive to her staffers, a complaint that dates back to 2006 when she was the Hennepin County attorney in Minneapolis, MN.
The media has discounted these criticisms as her being just a tough boss and that it’s sexist to bring up how she treats staffers when men don’t seem to suffer from these same expectations..
But the problem is real. She is well known to have the highest turnover rate with staffers in the US Senate. In the past, the US Senate leadership like Harry Reid have talked to her about this issue but the complaints still keep popping up.
Frankly, for me, I don’t want to see someone who can’t treat her staffers with respect, running the White House.
As per a 2/8/19 Vanity Fair report, “The way Sen. Klobuchar behaves in private with her staff is very different than when she’s in the public eye, and that kind of cruelty shouldn’t be acceptable for anyone.” Earlier in the week, the Huffington Post published a similar story, alleging that at least three people had turned down the opportunity to manage Klobuchar’s campaign due to her reputation for cruelty and repeated emotional abuse.”
“Klobuchar’s alleged temper was not unknown in Washington. Last year, The New York Times noted that, “On Capitol Hill, Ms. Klobuchar’s reputation is not all sweetness and light.” A March 2018 article in Politico described Klobuchar as among the “worst bosses in Congress,” with the highest office turnover rate in the Senate. But the new details reported by BuzzFeed and the Huffington Post, if true, are particularly damning. BuzzFeed reviewed e-mails, often sent between 1 and 4 in the morning, in which Klobuchar “regularly berated employees, often in all capital letters, over minor mistakes, misunderstandings, and misplaced commas. Klobuchar, in the e-mails, which were mostly sent over the past few years, referred to her staff’s work as ‘the worst in . . . years,’ and ‘the worst in my life.’”
“That anger regularly left employees in tears, four former staffers said. She yelled, threw papers, and sometimes even hurled objects; one aide was accidentally hit with a flying binder, according to someone who saw it happen, though the staffer said the senator did not intend to hit anyone with the binder when she threw it.”
“I cried. I cried, like, all the time,” said one former staffer.
[ . . . ]
“When staffers made mistakes, the emails show, she reamed them out—and sometimes, emails show, threatened to fire them—over threads that included many of their colleagues.”
I will not vote for someone like this.
Hi Gronda, As I state in my opening, my aim is to get information out about the candidates’ stances on the issues important to the majority of voters. I hope that this is a starting off point. There are many things each voter should take into consideration when they vote and I encourage people to research the candidates on their own. That said, I have often found it very hard to find information about issues which is why I’ve decided to concentrate on those in these posts.
A kind request if you could profile Senator Bernie at your convenience. I think he would be an amazing President if given the chance. Many thanks for your insightful research and hard work! Blessings.
Reblogged this on Bennet Kelley's Clippings & More and commented:
Political Charge’s second 7-Issues installment (which is far more comprehensive than that) on the 2020 contenders covers Senator Amy Klobuchar.
Regarding the issue of free education for all, that would be a resounding no from Ms Klobuchar.
Ms. Klobuchar. I am impressed with you. I am concerned with your position on guns though. Hunting firearms are not just the issue. I can support a position of no sales of bump stocks or any device the creates or mimics fully automatic firing power however, this so called ban on assault looking guns and large magazines is simply not an issue. These so called assault rifles are not any more dangerous than any hunting rifle. Also any red flag law that infringes on due process is dangerous and wrong. The second amendment is very specific and stands as is. If you defend the amendment as it is written specifically respecting my rights under the amendment SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED… THEN YOU HAVE MY VOTE. All of your ideas and positions i agree with. I also believe you will not stand for any bad mouthing from Trump.