Tulsi Gabbard dropped out of the presidential race on March 19, 2020. This page is no longer being updated.
Gabbard brings her experience as an Iraq War veteran to the presidential campaign and has staked out a distinctly anti-interventionist foreign policy. She was elected to Congress in 2012.
Hawaii Pacific University, B.S., 2009
April 12, 1981
Abraham Williams; divorced from Eduardo Tamayo
Major, Hawaii National Guard, 2003-present; Honolulu City Council, 2010-2012; Legislative aide to Sen. Daniel Akaka of Hawaii, 2006-2009; Hawaii State House, 2002-2004
GABBARD IN THE NEWS
Tulsi Gabbard Fast Facts
Updated 2:01 PM ET, Mon Apr 5, 2021
Here's a look at the life of former US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, former 2020 Democratic presidential candidate. Gabbard represented Hawaii's 2nd District. Personal Birth date: April 12, 1981 Birth place: Leloaloa, American Samoa Birth name: Tulsi Gabbard Father: Mike Gabbard, Hawaii state senator Mother: Carol (Porter) Gabbard, former Hawaii Board of Education member Marriages: Abraham Williams (2015-present); Eduardo Tamayo (2002-2006, divorced) Education: Hawaii Pacific University, B.S.B.A., 2009 Military service: Hawaii Army National Guard, 2003-present, Major Religion: Hinduism Other Facts As a teenager, co-founded Healthy Hawai'i Coalition, an environmental non-profit. She is the first American Samoan congresswoman and first practicing Hindu member of the US Congress. She is an avid surfer. Timeline 2002 - At age 21, is elected to the Hawaii State House to represent West Oahu, making her the youngest woman ever elected to the state legislature. 2003 - Enlists in the Hawaii Army National Guard. She completes her basic training between legislative sessions. 2004-2005 - Gabbard's unit is activated, and she voluntarily deploys, serving with a field medical unit in Iraq. 2006-2009 - Legislative aide to Senator Daniel Akaka of Hawaii. 2007 - Graduates from the Accelerated Officer Candidate School at the Alabama Military Academy. This makes Gabbard the first woman in the Academy's 50-year history to earn the title of the distinguished honor graduate. 2008-2009 - Gabbard deploys to Kuwait, training counterterrorism units. November 2, 2010 - Is elected to the Honolulu City Council. 2011 - Founds the film production company, Kanu Productions. November 6, 2012 - Defeats David "Kawika" Crowley in the 2nd Congressional District of Hawaii for the US House of Representatives. January 22, 2013 - Elected vice chair of the Democratic National Committee. August 28, 2013 - Aniruddha Sherbow is apprehended in Tijuana, Mexico, after making threats against Gabbard that the FBI and US Capitol Police "deemed credible." Sherbow is later sentenced to 33 months in prison. October 12, 2015 - On CNN's "The Situation Room," Gabbard says she was disinvited from a Democratic presidential debate after voicing a call for more of them. October 12, 2015 - Is promoted by the Hawaii Army National Guard from captain to major at a ceremony in Hawaii. November 20, 2015 - Calls for the United States to let Syrian President Bashar al-Assad remain in power. February 28, 2016 - On NBC's "Meet the Press," Gabbard announces her decision to step down as DNC vice chair to endorse Bernie Sanders' presidential bid. November 21, 2016 - Meets with President-elect Donald Trump. "President-elect Trump asked me to meet with him about our current policies regarding Syria, our fight against terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS, as well as other foreign policy challenges we face," Gabbard says in a statement. January 25, 2017 - Gabbard tells CNN's Jake Tapper that she met with Assad during an unannounced, four-day trip to Syria. "When the opportunity arose to meet with him, I did so because I felt that it's important that if we profess to truly care about the Syrian people, about their suffering, then we've got to be able to meet with anyone that we need to if there is a possibility that we can achieve peace," Gabbard says. January 31, 2017 - Facing criticism, Gabbard issues a statement saying that she will personally pay for her trip to Syria. April 7, 2017 - Gabbard claims she's "skeptical" that Assad's regime was behind a chemical weapons attack that killed dozens in Syria though the President, secretary of state and Pentagon officials found that Assad's regime was responsible for the attack. November 21, 2018 - Gabbard refers to Trump as "Saudi Arabia's bitch" in a tweet after he issues a statement backing Saudi Arabia in the wake of the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. January 11, 2019 - Gabbard tells CNN's Van Jones she will run for president in 2020, during an interview slated to air on January 12. "There are a lot of reasons for me to make this decision. There are a lot of challenges that are facing the American people that I'm concerned about and that I want to help solve," she says. January 17, 2019 - Gabbard issues an apology for her past comments and actions against the LGBTQ community following CNN's earlier report that she had supported her father's anti-gay organization, The Alliance for Traditional Marriage. Gabbard had previously apologized in 2012 while running for Congress. January 20, 2019 - Gabbard says that she does not regret meeting with Assad in 2017, adding that American leaders must meet with foreign leaders "if we are serious about the pursuit of peace and securing our country." February 2, 2019 - Gabbard officially launches her 2020 presidential campaign at an event in Hawaii. October 17, 2019 - In a podcast interview, former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton suggests that the Russians are "grooming" a current Democratic presidential candidate to run as a third-party and champion their interests. The comment appears to be directed at Gabbard, who has previously been accused of being boosted by Russia. In her response, Gabbard calls Clinton "the queen of warmongers," and concluded, "It's now clear that this primary is between you and me. Don't cowardly hide behind your proxies. Join the race directly." October 24, 2019 - Gabbard releases a campaign video announcing that she won't run for reelection to Congress in 2020. December 18, 2019 - Votes "present" on both articles of impeachment against Trump. January 22, 2020 - Gabbard files a defamation lawsuit against Clinton, alleging the former secretary of state and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee "lied" about Gabbard's ties to Russia. March 19, 2020 - Ends her 2020 presidential campaign and endorses former Vice President Joe Biden. May 27, 2020 - Drops the defamation lawsuit she filed against Clinton.
Gabbard has called for overhauling the tax system, which she says unfairly benefits the rich. She has called Trump’s 2017 tax cuts a “failure,” saying they did not provide relief to working Americans or small businesses. She co-sponsored recently passed House legislation raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. Gabbard opposed the 11-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal negotiated under Obama, which Trump withdrew from early in his term. She has also opposed the President’s trade war against China, which she argues has “damaged, not helped” our economy. More on Gabbard’s economic policy
Gabbard is among the co-sponsors of the House version of “Medicare for All” legislation, which would create a national public health insurance plan, but she has said she does not want to eliminate private insurance. She is also a co-sponsor of legislation allowing drug imports, as well as empowering Medicare to negotiate prices with drug manufacturers. Gabbard told The Washington Post that she supports allowing the federal government to produce and sell generic drugs. More on Gabbard’s health care policy
Gabbard, who has made foreign policy a core issue of her candidacy, has blamed US intervention in Latin America for creating the instability that triggered the surge in migration across the southern US border. She’s a co-sponsor of several bills aimed at keeping migrant families together at the border. She also supports creating a path for undocumented immigrants to gain legal status, including some who were brought to the US as children. More on Gabbard’s immigration policy
LATEST POLITICAL NEWS
Arizona mail-in voting bill stalls in Senate amid heated debate between GOP lawmakers
Updated 11:15 PM ET, Thu Apr 22, 2021
A bill aimed at changing the mail-in voting process in Arizona, including stopping some voters from automatically receiving ballots, has stalled following an intense back-and-forth between the bill's sponsor and another GOP lawmaker on Thursday. The legislation in question, SB 1485, would revise the state's permanent early voting list, which allows a voter to automatically receive a ballot by mail for every election. It would remove voters who have not participated in the last four elections, including partisan primaries, and also don't respond to final mailed notices. Voters would be allowed to sign up again if they were removed from the list. A part of an ongoing Republican-led effort to restrict voting across the country, the bill passed the state House earlier this week and had previously been approved by Arizona's Senate. Because it was amended in the House, it required final approval in the upper chamber before it could be sent to Republican Gov. Doug Ducey. The legislation was expected to get final passage in the GOP-led state Senate. But after coming back to the Senate floor from caucusing on changes to the legislation, GOP Sen. Kelly Townsend said she was voting against the legislation and any other election bills pending a Republican-backed audit of some of the state's mail-in ballots from the 2020 presidential election. The so-called audit ordered by the Republican-controlled Senate was expected to begin on Friday despite the election results already undergoing multiple reviews that found no evidence of widespread fraud and ultimately being certified by state election officials. But in a last-minute attempt to stop or at least delay the audit of Maricopa County's 2.1 million 2020 election ballots, lawyers for the Arizona Democratic Party and Maricopa County Supervisor Steve Gallardo, a Democrat, filed suit Thursday in Maricopa Superior Court, asking for an immediate restraining order. The audit has become highly controversial, with complaints from both the county and the secretary of state's office. "I have communicated to the whip, to the caucus, that I am not going to be voting on any election integrity bills from this point forward until after we have results that come from the audit," Townsend said earlier Thursday. Townsend argued that she wanted to wait for the results of the Senate's audit of Maricopa County's 2020 ballots before she would vote for the legislation. She said she wanted legislation to address any issues that may come up amid the review of the 2.1 million ballots. The expected "no" vote by Townsend effectively killed the bill for now and prompted personal jabs from bill sponsor GOP Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita, who called Townsend's action a "temper tantrum." That drew a sharp response from Townsend. "I mean it when I say, I am committed to fixing the problems in this election system in Arizona, even if it means my name is in red on this board, and you guys can say it's a temper tantrum," she said. "Absolutely I am upset about all of my election bills dead. Absolutely I'm upset. You want to see a temper tantrum, I will show you one if you really want to see it, but I will not." "The reason I am voting no on this bill is because I have given my commitment to my constituents that we will fix all election integrity, not just this issue," she added. Ugenti-Rita then voted against her own bill, in a move that allows the senator to bring the legislation forward again. The bill failed on a vote of 14-16. This story has been updated with further developments Thursday.