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John Delaney. Photo: Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images.

Editor's note: Delaney dropped out of contention for the Democratic presidential nomination on Jan. 31, 2020. Below is our original article on his candidacy.

John Delaney, a former House representative known for his bipartisan work and focus on artificial intelligence, became the first Democrat to say he would challenge Donald Trump for the presidency, announcing his candidacy two full years ago.

Key facts about John Delaney:
  • Current position: n/a
  • Age: 55
  • Born: Wood-Ridge, New Jersey
  • Undergraduate: Columbia University
  • Date candidacy announced: July 28, 2017
  • % of votes in line with Trump, per FiveThirtyEight: 34.4%
  • Previous roles: Representative for Maryland's 6th district, co-founder and CEO of CapitalSource, co-founder and CEO of Health Care Financial Partners
John Delaney's stance on key issues:
  • Gerrymandering: As a congressman, Delaney introduced the Open Our Democracy Act, legislation aimed at ending gerrymandering and establishing Election Day as a federal holiday.
  • Health care: In an interview with CNBC, Delaney said he supports creating a universal health care system, but not Medicare for All.
  • Universal pre-K: He supports providing universal pre-K, free community college and career and technical training.
  • Automation and artificial intelligence: While in Congress, Delaney founded the AI caucus and authored legislation to create an advisory committee on AI's impact in the workforce. He has called for policies that seek to address job loss due to AI and automation.
  • Minimum wage: He supports raising the federal minimum wage to $15.
  • Carbon tax: Last November, Delaney co-sponsored a bipartisan bill that looked to impose an initial $15-per-ton carbon "fee" on fossil fuel producers, processors and importers. Per Axios' Ben Geman, the plan had no chance of becoming law.
  • Infrastructure: Has a $2 trillion plan with 7 new infrastructure funds for rebuilding bridges, roads and water systems.
  • Public service: In July, Delaney proposed a mandatory national service plan to require all citizens who turn 18 or graduate high school to enroll in infrastructure apprenticeships, partake in community service projects, join the military or join what he calls the "ClimateCorps."
Key criticism of John Delaney:
  • Anonymity: Delaney has a lower profile than many of the other Democratic candidates running for president, despite already being in the race for over a year.
  • Pressure to drop out: In early July, Delaney's senior team sat him down and told him to drop out of the presidential race by mid-August, three sources close to the campaign told Axios. Those close to him think there's no chance he makes the September debates.
1 fun thing about John Delaney:

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

Go deeper

UN poll: Most see climate change as global emergency amid pandemic

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (C) fronts a Fridays For Future protest at the Swedish Parliament in Stockholm in September. Photo: Jonathan Nacksrtrand/AFP via Getty Images

64% of people from around the world say climate change is a global emergency, a United Nations poll published Wednesday finds.

Why it matters: It's biggest global survey on climate change ever conducted, with some 1.2 million participants from 50 countries — including the U.S. where 65% of those surveyed view climate change as an emergency.

Collins helps contractor before pro-Susan PAC gets donation

Sen. Susan Collins during her reelection campaign. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

A PAC backing Sen. Susan Collins in her high-stakes reelection campaign received $150,000 from an entity linked to the wife of a defense contractor whose firm Collins helped land a federal contract, new public records show.

Why it matters: The executive, Martin Kao of Honolulu, leaned heavily on his political connections to boost his business, federal prosecutors say in an ongoing criminal case against him. The donation linked to Kao was veiled until last week.

How cutting GOP corporate cash could backfire

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Companies pulling back on political donations, particularly to members of Congress who voted against certifying President Biden's election win, could inadvertently push Republicans to embrace their party's rightward fringe.

Why it matters: Scores of corporate PACs have paused, scaled back or entirely abandoned their political giving programs. While designed to distance those companies from events that coincided with this month's deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol, research suggests the moves could actually empower the far-right.

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