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Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Hawaii Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is running for president, she told CNN's Van Jones in an interview to air Saturday.

The big picture: Gabbard, one of the first female combat veterans in Congress, joins a crowded field of potential candidates. She plans to make a formal announcement "within the next week."

Catch up quick: Gabbard is a progressive Democrat who served as vice-chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, before resigning to support Sen. Bernie Sanders in the 2016 primaries.

  • Gabbard was first elected to the House in 2012, when she became the first American Samoan and Hindu lawmaker in Congress.
  • Steve Bannon, former chief strategist to President Donald Trump, was fond of Gabbard and set up a meeting between Trump and the Hawaii congresswoman during the 2016 transition. In a statement at the time, Gabbard said she would "never allow partisanship to undermine our national security when the lives of countless people lay in the balance.”
  • She called out now-President Trump after his statements over continuing support of Saudi Arabia in the wake of the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, tweeting that "being Saudi Arabia's b*tch is not 'America First.'"
  • Gabbard herself has come under fire for meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad in 2017. She has vehemently argued against U.S.-led regime change and "staked out anti-interventionist foreign policy positions in Congress," per CNN.

Republican National Committee Spokesman Michael Ahrens said in a statement: "Tulsi Gabbard has an even bigger problem than her lack of experience – it’s that she has no base of support. Liberals think she’s too conservative, conservatives think she’s too liberal, and just about everyone thinks her coziness with Bashar al-Assad is disturbing.”

Go deeper: Track the 2020 presidential election candidates

Go deeper

35 mins ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

2 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.

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