Aug 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Andrew Yang: "If you voted for Trump or didn't vote at all in 2016, I get it"

Former presidential candidate Andrew Yang said at the Democratic National Convention Thursday night that he understands and empathizes with those who voted for President Trump in 2016, but that recovery in this current crisis "is only possible with a change of leadership and new ideas."

Why it matters: The core theme of Yang's run was that Trump's victory in 2016 was rooted in the economic despair caused by thousands of jobs in America's heartland being lost to automation. Throughout his campaign, he repeatedly referred to Trump's election as simply a "symptom of the disease" exacerbated by the failures of the political class.

What he's saying: "Hello America, I'm Andrew Yang. You might know me as the guy who ran for president talking about math and the future. Unfortunately for all of us, that future is now."

  • "The pandemic has accelerated everything. If you're like me and my wife Evelyn, you don't know if your child's school is going to reopen this fall. 72% of Americans believe this is the worst time we have ever experienced, and 42% of the jobs that have been lost — millions of jobs — will never return."
  • "We are in a deep, dark hole, and we need leaders who will help us dig out. I know many politicians promise and then fail to deliver. If you voted for Trump or didn't vote at all back in 2016, I get it."
  • "But we must give our country a chance to recover. And recovery is only possible with a change of leadership and new ideas. Bold and innovative policies that will get help into your hands in the midst of this crisis are possible, but we need your help to turn the page for our country in 75 days."
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