Posts tagged with "Democrats"

Triumph Car illustrated by Mina Tocalini for 360 MAGAZINE.

What Your Car Might Say About How You’ll Vote

Forbes Wheels just published a summary of data indicating the links between the car Americans drive and who they’re likely to vote for. Below are the highlights — does your car match your political affiliation?

Vehicles And Voting: What Your Car Might Say About How You’ll Vote

A month ahead of the U.S. presidential election, pollsters might gain more insight into American consumers’ voting preferences by the vehicle they drive. Based on exclusive data from Strategic Vision, in an analysis of 250 car models and 11 political affiliations:

  • Republicans make up 55% of the SUV market and 53% of the heavy duty pickup market.
  • Democrats make up 38% and 36% of the small and mid-size APT (hybrids, EVs) market, respectively.
  • Among heavy duty pickups, Republicans outnumber Dems 8-1.
  • Democrats drive smaller, more fuel efficient cars (think Honda, Subaru, or Prius).
  • Brands also convey political leanings. Audi, BMW and Volvo over-index on Democrats, while Cadillac, Land Rover, Lexus and Lincoln are heavily Republican. Chrysler, Genesis, Jeep and Kia are more balanced between political preference.

For additional insights, a breakdown of top models by political affiliation or more on the data, view the chart below or visit the full synopsis here.

Republican, Democrat, Balanced Car Segments

About Forbes Wheels: 

Forbes Wheels is a trusted destination for car reviews, advice, news and trends, dedicated to helping consumers make informed car shopping decisions

Billionaires Gain, Workers Feel Pain

Half a year into a paralyzing pandemic that has cost millions of Americans their livelihoods and lives, the nation’s 643 billionaires have racked up $845 billion in collective wealth gains, a 29% leap since March 18. America’s billionaires reached this startling milestone of wealth accumulation even as special federal relief was drying up for millions of unemployed workers and for hard-pressed state and local governments struggling to provide vital services. Billionaire figures are from Forbes analyzed in a new report by Americans for Tax Fairness (ATF) and the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS).

Between March 18—the rough start date of the pandemic shutdown, when most federal and state economic restrictions were in place—and Sept. 15, the total net worth of the nation’s billionaires rose from $2.95 trillion to $3.8 trillion (see table below and this spreadsheet of all billionaires). That works out to gains of $141 billion a month, $32 billion a week, or $4.7 billion a day. Forbes’ annual billionaires report was published March 18, 2020, and the real-time data was collected Sept. 15 from the Forbes website.

Needless to say, ordinary workers did not fare as well. From mid-March to mid-August, the collective work income of rank-and-file private-sector employees—all hours worked times the hourly wages of the entire bottom 82% of the workforce—declined by 4.4.%, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

In fact, this billionaires’ bonanza occurred against a general backdrop of working-class pain:

The stock market in which billionaires have much of their money invested dropped sharply in the month before the pandemic lockdown. But the six months of gains that followed were not merely a reversal of those losses: billionaires are also $680 billion, or 22%, richer today than they were in February 2019, the release date of the most recent previous Forbes annual report (see table below).

“Every candidate in this campaign season, from presidential hopeful down, who’s pledging to lead us out of the coronavirus crisis must address this stark divergence between the nation’s wealthiest elite and their struggling fellow citizens,” said Frank Clemente, executive director of Americans for Tax Fairness. “The answer starts with creating a fair share tax system that narrows obscene wealth gaps and raises the trillions of dollars needed to address the present emergency and invest in our families and communities over the long-term.”

“The billionaire economy has been turbocharged by policymakers who are now stalling on relief for the real economy,” said Chuck Collins, director of the Institute for Policy Studies’ Program on Inequality and co-author of the report “Billionaire Bonanza 2020.” “The difference is stark between profits for billionaires and the widespread economic misery in our nation. Clearly, the priorities of our elected officials in Washington, DC are completely upside down.”

DATA ON THE WEALTH OF U.S. BILLIONAIRES AT 6 MONTHS & 20 MONTHS AVAILABLE HERE

Even among billionaires, wealth is highly concentrated. Roughly $400 billion, or only a little less than half of the total gains, were captured by just the 15 wealthiest on the billionaires list. The top three gainers alone—Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk—enjoyed fully 16% of the spoils, or a collective wealth surge of $137 billion. The total wealth of these three—$403 billion today—is nearly three times the $1.5 trillion in total wealth held by the bottom half of the population, or 165 million Americans. One billionaire from Michigan, Dan Gilbert of Quicken Loans, saw his wealth increase an astonishing 672%, growing from $6.5 billion to $50.2 billion.

The $845 billion wealth gain by 643 billionaires over the past six months far exceeds the:

Low-wage workerspeople of color and women have suffered disproportionately in the combined medical and economic crises because of long-standing racial and gender disparities. Billionaires are overwhelmingly white men.

House Democrats passed a relief bill back in May that offered a lifeline to Americans not sharing in the billionaires’ good fortune during the pandemic. Among its provisions:

All of the above data is available in one table here.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) have introduced legislation for a 60% tax on the pandemic wealth gains of billionaires between March 18 and the end of the year and use the proceeds to help working Americans cover healthcare costs.

Kaelen Felix illustrates Twin Towers for 360 Magazine

Remembering 9/11

By Elle Grant

For any American, 9/11 marks an essential day of reflection and remembrance. September 11, 2020 marks the nineteenth anniversary of the historic terrorist attacks that rocked New York City, shocking the United States and the world.

19 years ago, four passenger jets were hijacked by the terrorist organization Al-Qaeda in an effort to strike at American symbols. One was flown into the Pentagon Military Headquarters in Washington D.C. Another two, most remembered of the four, were flown into the two towers of the World Trade Center in New York City as Manhattan looked on in horror. A fourth, upon hearing news of the other hijackings, realized their plane was also under attack and chose to fight back, resulting in their plane plunging into a Pennsylvania field. In sum, roughly 3,000 lives were loss, with 2,700 of them being in New York City. The toll of lives and on the psyche of Americans was hitherto unimaginable, as was the ensuing consequences including the now infamous War on Terror.

The victims of 9/11 have been commemorated in numerous ways across the country, including at the National September 11 Memorial and Museum opened on the tenth anniversary of the attacks. The memorial is located where the Twin Towers formerly stood, now marked with design features such as man-made waterfalls, a forest of white oak trees, and the inscribed names of the victims as part of the memorial. This long-awaited memorial site has since been part of the commemorations each year, with 2020 being no exception. Visitors such as Vice President Pence and Democratic nominee for president Joseph Biden were among the attendees today.

New York is especially reflective this year as the anniversary of 9/11 comes during the COVID-19 pandemic, of which the city was an early epicenter, resulting in thousands of lives lost. Governor Andrew Cuomo, who was thrust onto the national stage following the New York outbreak, said “This year it is especially important that we all appreciate and commemorate 9/11, the lives lost and the heroism displayed ‎as New Yorkers are once again called upon to face a common enemy.” In NYC, the current death count due to coronavirus is placed at 23,000. This year, at the somber moments held at the September 11 memorial in Manhattan, those paying their respects wore face masks while honoring the dead, a new feature in remembering 9/11. New York remains a fixture of American culture, with eyes turned towards them during the tragedy of 9/11, as well as the current tragedy of coronavirus.

Another way victim’s families, including those killed and affected during rescue efforts, is the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, currently authorized through 2090 and worth billions of dollars. “Our nation owes each of you a profound debt that no words or deeds will ever repay,” President Trump said during the bill signing ceremony. “But we can, and we will keep our nation’s promise to you.” Certainly, monetary efforts are no replacements for the lives loss and the impacts made, but it represents Congress’ efforts to assist those left in the wake of the tragic attacks.

Vaughn Lowery of 360 MAGAZINE drops by world trade center on 9/11 in nyc.

Vaughn Lowery of 360 MAGAZINE drops by world trade center on 9/11 in nyc.

Trump Tax Findings posted by 360 MAGAZINE and illustrated by Rita Azar.

SSPBA endorses Donald Trump

Southern States Police Benevolent Association, Inc. (SSPBA) announced today that it is endorsing Donald Trump for President in the 2020 election. SSPBA board members and representatives met with Vice President Mike Pence in Raleigh today to announce the endorsement. SSPBA is composed of over 60,000 law enforcement officer members throughout the Southeast. This is the association’s first presidential endorsement in over twenty years.

“With the stakes as high as they are for the law enforcement profession today, we felt that we must speak up in support of the true law enforcement candidates,” said Chris Skinner, SSPBA president.

“President Trump has been unwavering in his support of law enforcement,” President Skinner continued.  “He has shown time and again that he stands behind the men and women who put on their uniform and badge and go to work each day,” President Skinner said.  “In these times when many are attacking the law enforcement profession, it is imperative that law enforcement officers know that they are not on their own as they face the dangers of their job.  We believe that President Trump and Vice President Pence have demonstrated that they understand and appreciate the honor and sacrifice of serving as a law enforcement officer.”

“The number one priority of government is to provide for safety and protection of the citizens. We are convinced that President Trump recognizes the fact that law enforcement and law enforcement officers are vital to the strength and stability of our communities,” President Skinner added. “We support President Trump and Vice President Pence because we know that they are the candidates who will continue to support us.”

Southern States Police Benevolent Association, Inc. is a non-profit professional organization dedicated to improving the law enforcement profession. PBA members are active or retired employees of federal, state, county and municipal law enforcement and correctional agencies. This professional association provides legal, legislative, disciplinary and other representation to member officers as well as a salary replacement death benefit to members’ beneficiaries. The PBA prohibits members from engaging in or condoning any strike by law enforcement officers, electing instead to represent members through aggressive political action. For more information, please visit our website at www.sspba.org.

Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, Mail-in Ballots

How You Can Stop Fake News From Faking You Out

The term “fake news” gained traction during the 2016 U.S. presidential race between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, and it has since become a familiar phrase in the American political vernacular.

Could fake news factor into the current presidential election season? The QAnon movement has been seen by some media and political observers as an example of a politically-driven group promoting fake news. Despite a lack of evidence to support their beliefs, followers of the QAnon movement believe that President Trump is fighting a satanic deep state of global elites. Facebook booted accounts promoting QAnon.

David Dozier (www.DavidDozierBooks.com), a professor emeritus in the School of Journalism & Media Studies at San Diego State University and author of The California Killing Field, thinks QAnon’s origins and emergence into national news cycles symbolizes the intent of fake news: to influence voters.

“We live in a world where it’s hard to believe almost anything you see related to politics on social media, and sometimes in the mainstream media as well,” Dozier says. “Our democratic process for electing political leaders has suffered great harm due to these disinformation campaigns.

“Fake news is definitely an issue heading into this critical presidential election. QAnon is the latest example of how conspiracy theories on the internet can gain traction and build followings.”

Researchers have suggested that false information presented as news fuels public distrust of political leaders and the media, influences people’s attitudes, and damages democracy.

“We’ve never been more polarized as a country, and fake news is dividing us further,” Dozier says. “It’s become a phenomenon, but people still have the power to sort the true from the false.”

Dozier suggests these ways to spot fake news:

  • Don’t fall into the bias trap. People can fall prey to confirmation bias, a tendency to favor information that confirms or supports one’s prior beliefs or values. Regardless of where you fall on the political spectrum,” Dozier says, “people lend more credence to information that reinforces what they already believe. To counteract the confirmation bias trap, try changing your perspective by taking the other side of the argument. Overall, be skeptical and think critically.”
  • Pause before you share or retweet. “Some people have an emotional reaction to a piece of news and think they should share it,” Dozier says. “But it’s important to know that the people who create disinformation are designing it to do just that – trigger an emotional reaction. So wait and ask questions about the content. Who shared it or created it? Why was this shared? Do some investigating.”
  • Go straight to the source. “The algorithms used by social media and news aggregator sites are designed to make sure we see stories geared to our interests,” Dozier says. “This makes it harder to identify if a story is real or fake, and who created it. Instead of following a link from the outlet that shows up on your social media, go online and head straight to the source. Inspect the poster’s profile and their post history. See if the poster has affiliations that are in line with spreading a certain point of view.”
  • Inspect the content the account posted. Conducting a reverse image search can make it easier to authenticate an image by finding its source. Fake news/disinformation often uses old images,” Dozier says. “With a reverse image search, you can search for previous instances of an image that appears online and to find if the image used is from a different story. You can also reverse image search the profile picture to see if that picture or similar photos are being used on other accounts. That’s a common practice to create fake personas online.

“Getting to the facts is getting more difficult,” Dozier says. “We have tons of information coming at us from all angles and platforms. It’s more important than ever to think for ourselves.”

About David Dozier          

David Dozier (www.DavidDozierBooks.com) is the author of The California Killing Field and an internationally recognized expert and speaker on mass communications, public relations, and communication management. Professor emeritus in the School of Journalism & Media Studies at San Diego State University, Dozier is author or co-author of over 100 books, book chapters, articles, and scholarly papers, and his works have been cited by other scholars over 4,000 times. Among his numerous honors are: the 1990 Pathfinder Award from the Institute for Public Relations Research and Education for his contribution to original scholarly research in the field; in 2008, named Outstanding Educator by the Public Relations Society of America; in 2009, named a Research Fellow by the Institute for Public Relations; in 2014, recipient of the Norma B. Connelly Public Affairs Service Award “for exceptional meritorious service to the U.S. Navy Public Affairs.” Dozier received his doctorate in communication research from Stanford University.

Rita Azar illustrates DNC article for 360 MAGAZINE

DNC Recap

By Eamonn Burke

The Democratic National Convention kicked off it’s virtual event last night, starting with speeches by prominent politicians including Bernie Sanders, John Kasich, Andrew Cuomo, and a keynote by Michelle Obama.

There were also powerful words delivered by George Floyd’s brother, Philonese Floyd, and Kristin Urquiza, who lost her father to Covid-19. “My dad was a healthy 65-year-old. His only pre-existing condition was trusting Donald Trump, and for that, he paid with his life,” she scathed, adding that her vote for Joe Biden would be in his honor. Mr. Floyd called for a moment of silence and for remembrance of those who have died from racial injustice to continue far beyond the night.

The politicians also denounced Trump and backed Biden strongly. Cuomo hailed Biden as having all of the characteristics of a true leader: a unifier, a builder, “as good as our people,” he said. “That man is Joe Biden.”

Kasich, a former Republican Governor of Ohio, acknowledged that he disagrees with Biden on some topics, but “that’s OK because that’s America.” Ultimately, he recognized that Joe Biden “can bring us together to help us find that better way.”

Senator Bernie Sanders, the former rival of Joe Biden for the Democratic nomination, made a strong appeal to emotion, highlighting the incredibly high stakes in this election and the importance of defeating President Donald Trump. “The future of our planet is at stake” he pleaded. “My friends, the price of failure is just too great to imagine.”

Lastly, Michelle Obama ended the night with a strong moral case against President Trump. She painted the current government as being one of “chaos, division and a total and utter lack of empathy,” and called Trump “the wrong president for our country.”

“If we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it,” said the former First Lady. Trump lashed back at Obama, tweeting that he would not be in the White House if not for the work of her husband, and calling the Obama-Biden administration “the most corrupt in history.

As far as logistics of the convention, the lack of a traditional setting was noticeable, and many of the speeches were pre recorded. Trump slammed Michelle Obama for this, denouncing her for having the wrong COVID-19 numbers. Democrats has planned to convene in Milwaukee, but later decided to move entirely online. Actress Eva Longoria was brought on as the host of the show to create a more personable atmosphere. Video clips, montages, and performances were also infused into the event.

The second night of the DNC featured a role call which officially nominated Joe Biden for the Democratic presidential ticket. It also featured more speeches from past politicians on both sides, such as former President Bill Clinton (D) and former Secretary of State Colin Powell (R). There were new faces as well, like U.S Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (D). The night ended with Joe’s wife Jill speaking. The event was hosted by actress Tracee Ellis Ross.

Clinton focused on the economy in his speech, highlighting the U.S as “the only major industrial economy to have its unemployment rate triple” despite Trump claiming how well we are doing as a country. Ocasio-Cortez used her speech to second the nomination of Bernie Sanders, a formality for a candidate over a threshold of 300 delegates.

Joe Biden and his family made a virtual appearance from a classroom to accept the nomination, and he appeared later on after his wife’s speech.

In her speech, Jill Biden made a case for why her husband had the capacity and experience to understand the hardships that American families are going through in this crisis. She mentioned the death of their son, Beau, from cancer, and how he was able to help her through that time. The compliments went both ways, as Joe called her “so damn tough and loyal.” Dr. Biden assured viewers that “if we entrust this nation to Joe, he will do for your family what he did for ours.”

On night three of the DNC, Kamala Harris was historically nominated as the first black and Asian woman to feature on a major presidential ticket. In her speech, Harris told her story of being an immigrant – the daughter of India and Jamaican immigrants – and used it to empathize with so many in a similar situation. She then went after Trump, delving into his moral and ethical flaws: “I know a predator when I see one” she assured. She finished off by speaking about inequities, especially racial ones. “There is no vaccine for racism” she said in a her call to action. “We’ve gotta do the work.”

Later in the night Hillary Clinton spoke, delivering a somber warning against repeating the mistakes made in 2016, when she lost to Donald Trump: “this can’t be another ‘woulda, coulda, shoulda’ election.” She pleaded for viewers to vote, as was a main theme in throughout the DNC. Lastly, she praised the record breaking amount of women continuing to appear in government, including Senator Harris, but acknowledged the work still to be done.

President Obama’s speech brought something considerably rare for a former president to do: he attacked President Trump. He labeled Trump as blatantly inadequate for the job of president: “Donald Trump hasn’t grown into the job because he can’t, and the consequences of that failure are severe.”

The night also featured a performance by Billie Eilish of her new unreleased song “My Future.” It was followed by a message about the importance of voting.

The fourth and final night officially nominated Joe Biden as the 2020 Democratic Presidential candidate. In his speech, he covered his policy plans from the coronavirus to guns to Medicare, while also addressing the economic recession caused by the pandemic as well as the racial reckoning going on in the country as a result of inequalities. He also spoke of the and Harris’ personal stories, and how they informed them to be ready for the job. The speech drew acclaim from both parties.

“Here and now I give you my word,” said Biden. “If you entrust me with the presidency, I will draw on the best of us, not the worst. I will be an ally of the light, not the darkness.”

politics, business, red, tie, blue

Continued Protection For DACA Recipients

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the Trump administration’s attempt to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy was unlawful. This is a huge victory for 700,000 people protected by DACA who have only known the United States as their home and will not have to immediately fear being deported to countries where they have no connections.

Alliance for Justice President Nan Aron released the following statement:

“Today’s ruling recognized that this administration’s rescission of DACA was nothing more than an outrageous abuse of power to attack DREAMERs and immigrant communities. It should come as no surprise that Justices Kavanaugh and Gorsuch dissented given their massive support for broad executive power and willingness to allow abuses of that power to go unchecked.

DACA recipients are an integral part of America’s tapestry. Amidst the global pandemic, DACA recipients have been on the front lines; they are medical workers caring for our families, educators rising to the challenge of distance learning, and service industry workers keeping open essential businesses. Today’s ruling grants temporary relief to hundreds of thousands of DREAMers to ensure they can continue contributing to their communities and living out their lives.

The fight to protect them is not over, however. Senate Republicans have advanced nearly 200 of Trump’s ultraconservative judges, including two dozen they knew to have egregious anti-immigrant records.

We must continue to fight for a justice system that protects all our rights, regardless of immigration status.”

Elizabeth Warren, presidential candidate, essence magazine, essence.com, 360 MAGAZINE

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN: ESSENCE.COM OP-ED

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) pens an exclusive op-ed for ESSENCE.com entitled, Closing the School-to-Prison Pipeline for Good. In this piece, she talks about the threat that young students of color face every day, rethinking the approach to public education and public safety and more. She states:

“In the 1990’s, hundreds of police officers were deployed to public schools across the country as a component of the war on drugs and later in response to school shootings. Today, at least fourteen million students attend schools staffed with a police officer — but without a single counselor, social worker, psychologist, or nurse.

The result is that in many cases, an infraction as simple as back talking or skipping class that should end in detention or administrative intervention can end in arrest. Over the years, the implementation of policies from Zero-Tolerance to surveillance to criminalizing lateness and absenteeism have created a system of loopholes that trap our most vulnerable students in a pipeline kept alive by the for-profit prison system. It’s a system that disproportionately hurts black and brown students and undermines their learning…As President, I will work to close the school to prison pipeline, by rethinking our approach to public education and public safety…”

In addition, she reflects on her recently revealed plan to invest $800 billion in public schools and how she would invest “an additional $100 billion in ‘Excellence Grants’—that’s equivalent to $1 million for every public school in the country—to invest in things like after school arts programs and school-based student mentoring programs…” This would be in an overall effort toreduce the impact of systemic racial and economic disadvantage on students.

For more, visit ESSENCE.com.

NBA and China

The American public strongly supports the Houston Rockets general manager’s tweet regarding Hong Kong and China’s rights conflict. (Daryl Morey, the GM, tweeted support for the Hong Kong protesters seeking freedom from Chinese oversight.  The Chinese reacted with disdain and business with the NBA was threatened).Only 9 percent of the public thought the Rockets GM, Daryl Morey, should be fired, with 77 percent saying the Rockets should keep him and defend his freedom of speech.  14 percent said they did not know or had no opinion.

In addition, 54 percent of the nation feels Daryl Morey should be applauded for taking a stand supporting the Hong Kong protesters, with only 19 percent saying he should not have sent the tweet because it risked valuable relationships over a foreign domestic issue.  27 percent did not know or had no opinion.
These are the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted this week among 703 adult Americans across the country on both landlines and cellphones.  The Poll has a margin of error of +/-3.8 percent.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver first apologized for the tweet but later backtracked and showed support for freedom of speech.  46 percent of the public felt he handled it well, and 36 percent say he did not, with 18 percent saying they did not know or had no opinion.

52% Say Lebron James’ Comments were out of self-interest

LeBron James tweeted condemnation of Morey, claiming “he wasn’t educated on the situation” and endangered people “not only financially but physically.”  Only 28 percent thought his reaction was sincere, with 52 percent saying he acted out of financial self-interest.

69% expressed concern that China has so much influence over an American professional League, with only 23 percent saying they are not concerned.

Morey’s Tweet vs. Kaepernick’s Kneeling

Comparing Morey’s tweet to Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling during the national anthem, 47 percent said both actions should be defended as free speech, with 16 percent saying that it only applied to Morey and 5 percent saying it only applied to Kaepernick.

There are big differences between Democrats and Republicans on this comparison.  59 percent of Democrats and only 29 percent of Republicans say that they should both be defended as free speech, while 7 percent of Democrats and 21 percent of Republicans say that it only applies to Morey.

“The fundamental right of free speech seems to have carried the day in favor of Daryl Morey’s tweet,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the Seton Hall Sports Poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. “It is much clearer when applied to a foreign power than to a domestic one.”

For more information, visit here.  (Questions and results breakdown below, an online version of this release may be found here.

 

Will Candidates Talk About Disability at the Debates?

This year marks the 29th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) becoming law. The ADA was intended to ensure that people with disabilities could earn an income and achieve independence, just like anyone else. With the Democratic candidates debating this week in Detroit, the question remains if any of the candidates will address the one-in-four adults in the U.S. who have a disability from the debate stage.

Just 12 of the 20 Democratic candidates debating this week made any mention of the ADA anniversary on Friday.

Joe Biden

Joe Biden tweeted that he was “proud to have cosponsored the Americans with Disabilities Act” and thanked Sen. Harkin for his “vision & persistence” to ensuring its passage, “a critical step in the fight for equal rights for people with disabilities.” Biden also talked about his own stutter, tweeting that his parents taught him “that being different is no barrier to success.”

“Today, on the Act’s anniversary, we must recommit to fully breaking down barriers so everyone has the opportunity to succeed—no matter their zip code, income, race, or disability,” Biden also tweeted. “As president, I’ll ensure everyone’s treated with dignity and respect.”

The Biden campaign also unveiled a new page on its website devoted to people with disabilities, joining the Sanders and Booker campaign in being the third campaign to do so. His plans, so far, include ensuring that children with disabilities “get the education and training they need to succeed;” protecting and building on the Affordable Care Act, Medicare and Medicaid; training police departments for interactions for people with mental illness, autism or who are deaf “so misunderstanding does not lead to incarceration;” and to ensure people with mental health problems “are provided with the housing or other social services they may need.”

Cory Booker

Cory Booker, who also has a page on his website devoted to equality for people with disabilities, tweeted “We have more to do to ensure equality for Americans with disabilities who still face high poverty rates & barriers to health care & quality of life. As president, I’ll fight for equal rights & inclusion for people with disabilities.”

“As president, Cory will work to ensure accessibility, equality, and opportunity for all people with disabilities,” his website states, including, “break down barriers to accessing employment, transportation, housing, and health care with the Disability Integration Act; fully fund the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA); and raise wages for people with disabilities by phasing out the subminimum wage.”

The Booker campaign also has a new accessibility policy on its website. “Cory 2020 is dedicated to offering a quality online experience to those with disabilities,” it states. “Cory 2020 is working to achieve substantial conformance with generally-recognized and accepted guidelines for website accessibility… The website will continue to be assessed on a recurring basis in an effort to substantially comply with these guidelines.”

This is important as a study last month by the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired found that none of the 2020 presidential candidates have websites that fully comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act. Just a few days following this study, the Booker campaign had an hour-long phone call with RespectAbility detailing steps they could take to become more accessible – on their website as well as via social media, at events, etc.

Steve Bullock

“29 years ago today, the ADA began to tear down the walls preventing them from the fair shot they deserve,” Steve Bullock tweeted.

The Montana Governor also talked about his work as governor. “I fought for folks with disabilities to receive equal wages and work without discrimination — but we have a long way to go,” he tweeted. “On the anniversary of the ADA, we must all recommit to ensuring a fair shot for every American. As President, that’s exactly what I’ll do.”

Montana now ranks 8th in the nation for employment rates of people with disabilities with 31,935 of the 69,553 working-age (18-64) Montanans with disabilities being employed. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows Montana has maintained a 45.9 percent disability employment rate from 2017 to 2018.

Julián Castro

“For 29 years, the Americans with Disabilities Act has helped defend the rights of disabled Americans,” Julián Castro tweeted. “It is integral to building an inclusive, fair, and just nation and as president, I will defend and strengthen it.”

In a series of additional tweets, Castro outlined his People First policies, including “fully funding the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act,” strengthening housing protections, and fixing the system that leads to disabled people being killed by police.

“There’s so much more that needs to be done to protect the civil rights of people with disabilities, and I am committed to that cause,” he closed.

Kirsten Gillibrand

“29 years ago, the Americans with Disabilities Act codified protections against discrimination based on disability,” Kirsten Gillibrand tweeted. “My presidency will advance this fight, including having disability community representation in my Cabinet. Let’s keep working to make our society accessible for all.”

In May, Gillibrand made news with a new commitment of having someone with a disability in her Cabinet. The issue of hiring staff with disabilities on the campaign has been addressed by two other presidential candidates: Beto O’Rourke and Pete Buttigieg. Both of them have promised to hire campaign staff with disabilities, and O’Rourke promised to hire them to positions of leadership on the campaign and, if he wins, in the Oval Office. Buttigieg already has followed through with his promise of hiring a person with a disability on his campaign staff.

One month later, in response to a question posed to all of the viable 2020 presidential candidates by RespectAbility, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities for people with disabilities, Gillibrand’s campaign has pledged to not only “make accommodations to enable staff with a disability to perform their job without undue hardship” but also “to make volunteer opportunities inclusive and encourage creative solutions to allow people with disabilities to be an active part of our team.”

Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris, who held an hour-long call with her supporters on this topic on Friday, wrote a blog post “recommitting to build an America that is fully inclusive and accessible for everyone,” noting that there is still a lot of work to do 29 years later.

She called for ensuring all people with disabilities receive the minimum wage or higher; equal access to educational opportunities for children with disabilities; and “access to quality health care and community supports and services.”

“As the former Attorney General of California, I know the impact that strong enforcement of civil rights laws can have on the lives of Americans,” she wrote. “That’s why I will appoint an Attorney General who prioritizes enforcement of the ADA, and all disability civil rights laws, and will double the size of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division to ensure we have the resources to back up that commitment.”

Harris also unveiled her campaign’s Americans with Disabilities Leadership Council, which “will work closely with my team and me throughout this campaign to take on the issues that are most important to Americans with disabilities.”

Amy Klobuchar

“The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed 29 years ago today, ensuring accessibility for all Americans and prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability,” Amy Klobuchar tweeted. “It changed millions of lives and we’re a better nation because of it.”

Disability is personal to Klobuchar. When her daughter was born, she could not swallow for the first two years of her life. “Many Minnesotans know a family or a person who has been affected by a disability,” she wrote in 2015. “For a lot of us, this is personal. … [D]uring those two years, I was able to see through the eyes of a parent of a child who was struggling, and I know that, like me, the parents of children with disabilities want what is best for their families — both now and for the years to come.”

Beto O’Rourke

“The ADA is a landmark law—but recently, it has been under attack,” Beto O’Rourke tweeted. “29 years after its passage, let’s build a country where Americans with disabilities have full access to education, opportunity, and the workforce, are treated with dignity, and can live to their full potential.”

Disability is personal to O’Rourke. His 38-year-old younger sister, Erin, has intellectual and developmental disabilities. She grew up in public special education classrooms in and around El Paso, TX and currently lives in a community for intellectually disabled adults. He is close to his sister and instructs his aides that “unless he’s in an interview,” he will stop everything to take her frequent calls. “Some longtime El Pasoans credit O’Rourke’s family with always proudly including Erin in all activities,” the Dallas News reported. What’s more, O’Rourke regularly mentions Erin on the campaign trail when discussing disability issues, particularly when it comes to education.

Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders called for recommitting to “championing the rights of people with disabilities,” citing a “moral responsibility.”

“We must guarantee people with disabilities the right to live in the community; truly integrated employment that pays a living wage; affordable, accessible housing; and the right to health care, including mental health care and home and community based services and supports,” he tweeted, following up with a tweet calling to get rid of “waiting lists and means tests.”

As he did in 2016, his campaign has a dedicated page on their website for disability issues. While some of the other campaigns have pages on mental health, the Sanders campaign was the first 2020 campaign to have a dedicated page on disability rights on their website.

“We need a president who will champion expanding the rights of people with disabilities,” his website reads. “Despite the progress that has been made over the past two decades, we unfortunately still live in a world where people with disabilities have fewer work opportunities and where the civil rights of people with disabilities are not always protected and respected. People with disabilities experience much higher poverty rates than people without disabilities. As a nation, we have a moral responsibility to ensure that all Americans have the support they need to live with dignity.”

It also is important to note that people with disabilities are included on his page outlining his commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. One of his organizational priorities, for example, is “increasing engagement of communities of color, women, those with disabilities, and all people historically shut out of electoral and caucus processes.”

Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Warren tweeted several statements, the first of which she spoke about her first job out of college – “teaching students with speech and learning disabilities at a public school.” She witnessed firsthand how the ADA changed the lives of the children in her classroom.

“It not only helped dismantle prejudices about Americans with disabilities, it recognized their right to live, work, and love independently,” she tweeted. Yet, she said, there is more work to be done. “As I celebrate the ADA today, I’m committing to continue the fight to protect these rights every step of the way.”

Marianne Williamson

Marianne Williamson’s Instagram post and Tweet have come under fire from many in the disability community for insensitive language and her focus on visiting a sheltered workshop in Las Vegas that pays its disabled employees less than a dollar an hour. On Monday afternoon, her Instagram post was edited, removing any reference to Opportunity Village but not removing the phrase “differently abled,” a term the disability community does not use to describe themselves.

In her Instagram post, Williamson calls for people with disabilities being able to access “all educational and training programs,” including preparing children for with disabilities for “post-secondary education” and increasing funding for assistive technology.

Andrew Yang

“For 29 years Americans with disabilities have had a greater sense of dignity and respect,” Andrew Yang tweeted. “More work to be done but my family is thankful for the ADA.”

Yang is the father of two sons, one of whom is on the autism spectrum. The issues of early intervention and erasing stigma for people with autism is not just important to him. It’s personal. He believes so much in his Autism Intervention Program and Funding that he discusses them in person and on his website.

On his campaign website, he writes, “One of my boys is on the autism spectrum—I know how invaluable resources and intervention can be, particularly if adopted early on. Families struggle with this in very personal ways. As a country, we should provide ample resources to parents to be able to intervene to support the development of children with autism or who are exceptional in other ways. Many of these children have something unique to offer.”

Donald Trump

Current President Donald Trump, who is running for re-election in 2020, also commemorated the anniversary.

“Today, we renew our commitment to empowering Americans with disabilities through equal access so they can achieve their full potential, and we celebrate their contributions to our great Nation,” Trump said in a proclamation. “The more than 61 million Americans who are currently living with disabilities are part of the fabric of our Nation, and the ADA helps eliminate barriers to their full participation in every community across the country.  We are grateful for the ADA for helping to foster a vibrant culture of inclusivity in our Nation.”

Trump noted that the employment rate for people with disabilities has been growing recently.

“My Administration continues to encourage hiring individuals with disabilities, including through our Multi-Agency Task Force on Improving Employment for People with Disabilities,” he said in the proclamation, citing an Executive Order to increase apprenticeship opportunities for all, including people with disabilities. “This action has helped bring reforms to ineffective training and workforce development programs, better enabling Americans with disabilities to develop in-demand skills for a wide range of industries.”

Importance of the Disability Vote

“More than half of Americans with disabilities have reached out to their elected officials or attended a political rally in the recent past versus 39 percent of Americans without a disability or any disability connection,” said former U.S. Representative and Dallas Mayor Steve Bartlett, citing a recent poll. Bartlett, who was a primary author of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, is the board chair of RespectAbility.

According to the Census Bureau, more than 56 million Americans live with some form of disability. This can include visible conditions such as spinal cord injuries, visual impairments or hearing loss to people living with invisible disabilities such as learning disabilities, mental health or Autism.

Fully three-quarters of likely voters either have a disability themselves or have a family member, or a close friend with disabilities. Therefore, as the 2020 candidates take to the debate stage, it is in the best interest of every presidential candidate and the citizens of this country for candidates to recognize disability issues at this time.

Democratic pollster Celinda Lake said, “Both including people with disabilities in your campaign and talking about this demographic at town halls and debates is the right thing to do but you don’t have to do it because it’s just the right thing to do. It also is the smart thing to do.”

Eight candidates did not publicly celebrate the ADA through a statement on their website or social media. These candidates include: Michael Bennet; Pete Buttigieg; Bill de Blasio; John Delaney; Tulsi Gabbard; John Hickenlooper; Jay Inslee; and Tim Ryan.

“Candidates for office ignore the disability community at their peril,” added Bartlett. “People with disabilities are politically active swing voters, and candidates should take note of the important issues they care about.”

Additional research conducted by Eric Ascher and Ariella Barker.

RespectAbility is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of their communities. RespectAbility does not rate or endorse candidates. View more coverage of 2020 presidential candidates.