Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is running for President in 2020. The Democrat and Iraq War veteran who was first elected to Congress in 2012 told CNN’s Van Jones in an interview slated to air Saturday evening that a formal announcement of her candidacy will come shortly, ABC News writes.
“I have decided to run and will be making a formal announcement within the next week,” Gabbard said. The 37-year-old is also the first Hindu member of Congress, and one of the first major candidates to directly declare a presidential candidacy.
So far only former Maryland Rep. John Delaney has mounted an official presidential bid, while Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren announced the formation of a presidential exploratory committee at the end of last year.
Gabbard sits on the House Armed Services and Foreign Affairs committees and is currently a Major in the Army National Guard, ABC News adds.
Within minutes of the news that Gabbard is mounting a presidential campaign, the Republican National Committee (RNC) blasted out a press release detailing her potential vulnerabilities.
“Tulsi Gabbard has an even bigger problem than her lack of experience — it’s that she has no base of support,” RNC spokesman Michael Ahrens wrote in a statement released Friday evening.
Gabbard was a vocal supporter of Senator Bernie Sanders in 2016. She gained national attention when she resigned as vice chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee in order to throw her support behind the Vermont senator during the presidential campaign season, Business Insider notes.
Explaining her decision at the time, Gabbard said, “I think it’s most important for us, as we look at our choices as to who our next commander in chief will be, is to recognize the necessity to have a commander in chief who has foresight, who exercises good judgment.”