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Sen. Bernie Sanders. Photo: Sean Rayford/Getty Images

Bernie Sanders is an independent Vermont senator whose platform has been a force in driving the party to the left. He is one of the last major candidates standing — alongside former Vice President Joe Biden — in the race for the 2020 Democratic nomination.

Key facts:
  • Current position: Senator from Vermont — 12 years served
  • Age: 77
  • Born: Brooklyn, New York
  • Undergraduate: Brooklyn College, University of Chicago
  • Date candidacy announced: Feb. 19, 2019
  • % of votes in line with Trump, per FiveThirtyEight: 14.4%
  • Previous roles: House Representative for Vermont's at-large congressional district, Mayor of Burlington, Vermont
Stance on key issues:
  • Medicare for All: Spearheaded a sweeping Medicare for All plan introduced in 2017.
  • Green New Deal: Co-sponsor and has spoken consistently about the severity of climate change.
  • Reproductive health care: His plan aims to codify Roe v. Wade, make birth control available over-the-counter, and ban abstinence-only sex education. He also wants to fully fund Planned Parenthood and Title X, and appoint federal judges who align with Roe v. Wade.
  • Taxes: Supports raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans. Proposed hiking estate taxes for millionaires and billionaires, including a top rate of 77% for estates over $1 billion.
  • Minimum wage: Co-sponsored a bill in April 2017 that would raise the federal minimum wage to $15. In September 2018, he introduced the Stop Bad Employers by Zeroing Out Subsidies Act, to tax companies for public benefits their workers accessed.
  • Voting rights: Says felons should be allowed to vote from prison.
  • College tuition: Plans to eliminate all $1.6 trillion of student debt and pay for it by raising taxes on Wall Street. Public universities, community colleges and trade schools would become tuition-free.
  • Marijuana: Co-sponsored Sen. Cory Booker's Marijuana Justice Act to legalize marijuana federally.
  • Agriculture: Proposed helping revitalize rural farming communities and breaking up big agriculture corporations.
  • Criminal justice: Promises to end "profiteering" by corporations, reform police and prison systems and end mass incarceration.
  • Hong Kong violence: Willing to sanction foreign officials involved in human rights abuses, including violence against demonstrators.
  • Education: His K-12 plan focuses on the needs of students of color and low-income students.
  • Labor: Wants to overhaul labor laws and increase union membership and rights.
  • Broadband access: Expand access and break up large companies.
Key criticisms:
  • Socialism: That he's too far left or the party has moved past him and he is no longer the only potential candidate who carries the "progressive" label.
  • Campaign staff sexual misconduct: Sanders' 2016 presidential campaign was plagued by patterns of sexism and inappropriate behavior.
  • Age: A recent poll found 43 of Iowa's 76 Democratic county leaders say they want a young candidate as their 2020 nominee for president.
  • Lack of loyalty: Despite running for president as a Democrat in 2016, Sanders has long identified as an independent and said he won't join the party.
  • Pragmatism: Many of Sanders' proposals would need high levels of government spending, prompting questions about how feasible some actually are.
1 fun thing:
  • While serving as mayor of Burlington, he recorded a folk album — titled "We Shall Overcome" — with 30 Vermont musicians.

Go deeper: Everything you need to know about the other 2020 candidates

Go deeper

GOP Rep. Andrew Clyde defends comparison of Jan. 6 riot to "tourists"

Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.) departs a press conference on June 14. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.) defended comments made during a House committee hearing in which he compared the deadly Jan. 6 Capitol riot to a "normal visit."

The big picture: In a heated back-and-forth during a Rules Committee meeting on Tuesday, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), who sits on the select committee investigating the attack, pressed Clyde on whether he had watched the officers' testimony earlier in the day.

1 hour ago - Health

England lifts quarantine requirement for vaccinated EU, U.S. citizens

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and President Biden at the G7 in Cornwall last month. Photo: Leon Neal - WPA Pool/Getty Images

Fully vaccinated travelers from the European Union and the U.S. will no longer need to quarantine when arriving in England, effective Aug. 2 at 4 a.m. local time, the U.K. government announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: It's a reflection of the British government's confidence in its highly successful COVID-19 vaccine rollout, despite the spread of the Delta variant. The move stands in stark contrast to the Biden administration's continued refusal to lift restrictions for travelers from the U.K. and Europe.

3 hours ago - Sports

Simone Biles is still a winner

Photo: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Simone Biles' leadership on the mat has never been questioned. After her shocking withdrawal from Tuesday's team final, she proved just as capable a leader off of it.

What happened: During the first rotation, Biles performed an uncharacteristically bad vault, appearing to lose herself in midair.