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Photo: Joshua Lott/AFP/Getty Images

Andrew Yang is a former tech executive who founded Venture for America, a nonprofit young entrepreneur fellowship program. His central issue, a proposal for universal basic income, is grounded in the belief that millions of jobs will be wiped away due to automation.

Key facts about Andrew Yang:
  • Current position: n/a
  • Age: 44
  • Born: Schenectady, N.Y.
  • Undergraduate: Brown University
  • Date candidacy announced: November 6, 2017
  • Previous roles: Founder of Venture for America, Manhattan Prep CEO, Stargiving.com VP, corporate attorney at Davis Polk & Wardwell
Andrew Yang's stance on key issues:
  • Universal basic income: Yang's proposal — "The Freedom Dividend" — would provide every American over 18 years old with $1,000 per month. He contends that this would grow the economy by 13% and increase the labor force by 4.5-5 million people. This policy stems from his belief that AI and automation will wipe out millions of jobs, and that UBI is the path to avoiding economic ruin.
  • Gun control: Wants to require a federal background check and federal buyback program, eliminate the gun show loophole, ban high-capacity magazines and prohibit the manufacture and sale of bump stocks, suppressors, and other attachments.
    • References smart guns in his policy and says he plans to "invest in innovative technology that would make firearms harder to fire for non-owners of the gun."
    • Those who currently own firearms under Yang's plan would be grandfathered in with their existing licenses and receive one-time "Good Gun Owner" tax credits for adhering to additional requirements.
  • Medicare for All: Yang advocates for a single-payer health care system.
  • Economy: Yang calls his economic philosophy "human-centered capitalism," advocating for a system that emphasizes metrics that measure "human well-being and fulfillment," such as standard of living, health-adjusted life expectancy, childhood success rate and social and economic mobility. He described his plans as a "vision for a trickle-up economy."
  • Marijuana legalization: Yang pledged to legalize marijuana and pardon all non-violent drug related offenses, then later clarified that he would only pardon marijuana-related offenses. Yang said he would still decriminalize opioids.
  • Social media: Yang has proposed a federal department to oversee social media, citing "a huge surge in depression, anxiety, and emotional issues." He described it as "a Department of the Attention Economy."
  • Circumcision: In March, Yang came out against circumcision, telling The Daily Beast: "From what I’ve seen, the evidence on it being a positive health choice for the infant is quite shaky."
Key criticisms of Andrew Yang:
  • Anonymity: Yang is not well-known and will struggle to drive the conversation.
  • Inexperience: He has not worked in government before.
1 fun thing about Andrew Yang:
  • He says he rebranded universal basic income to the "Freedom Dividend" because it tests better with conservatives.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

New York AG: State severely undercounted COVID nursing home deaths

Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Photo: Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Data from New York's public health department undercounted COVID-19-related deaths in nursing homes by as much as 50%, according to a report released Thursday by state Attorney General Letitia James.

The big picture: Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration did not include nursing home patients who died after being transferred to the hospital in its tally of over 8,500 nursing home deaths, according to the report. Data provided to the attorney general's office from 62 nursing homes "shows a significantly higher number of resident COVID-19 deaths can be identified than is reflected" in the official count.

Trading platforms curb trading on high-flying Reddit stocks

Major trading platforms including Robinhood, TDAmeritrade and Interactive Brokers are restricting — or cutting off entirely — trading on high-flying stocks like GameStop and AMC Entertainment.

Why it matters: It limits access to the traders that have contributed to the wild Reddit-driven activity of the past few days — a phenomenon that has gripped Wall Street and the country.

Updated 2 hours ago - Economy & Business

2020 was the economy's worst year since 1946

Source: FRED; Billions of chained 2012 dollars; Chart: Axios Visuals

One of the last major economic report cards of the Trump era lends perspective to the historic damage caused by the pandemic, which continued to weigh on growth in the final quarter of 2020.

By the numbers: The U.S. economy grew at a 4% annualized pace in the fourth quarter, a sharp slowdown in growth compared to the prior quarter. For the full year, the economy shrank by 3.5% — the first annual contraction since the financial crisis and the worst decline since 1946.

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