Democratic presidential contenders jump into 2020 fray


Posted at Feb 11 2019 09:07 AM | Updated as of Feb 11 2019 09:56 AM

Sunset is seen over the White House. Carlos Barria, Reuters/File

US Democrats, anxious to get started on their quest to recapture the White House in 2020, are lining up to launch campaigns in what is quickly becoming a crowded field of presidential contenders.

A diverse group including at least 5 US senators will be vying for the right to challenge President Donald Trump, the likely Republican nominee, who could face a long-shot primary challenger.

Here are the Democrats who have either launched campaigns or formed exploratory committees to begin raising money and hiring staff for a presidential run:

US Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) speaks during his 2020 US presidential campaign at the Iowa River Brewing in Marshalltown, Iowa, US, Feb. 9, 2019. Scott Morgan, Reuters

CORY BOOKER - Booker, 49, a black second-term senator from New Jersey and former mayor of Newark, gained prominence in the fight over Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination. He announced his candidacy on Feb. 1, the first day of Black History Month, mentioning the impact of racial discrimination on his family and saying he would focus on creating good jobs and reforming the criminal justice system.

2020 presidential candidate South Bend (IN) Mayor Pete Buttigieg waves after delivering remarks at the United States Conference of Mayors winter meeting in Washington, US, Jan. 24, 2019. Yuri Gripas, Reuters

PETE BUTTIGIEG - The mayor of South Bend, Indiana, launched his underdog campaign to become the first openly gay president on Jan. 23 with a call for a new generation of leadership to bring fresh approaches to problems. Buttigieg, 37, brushed off questions about his experience by highlighting the economic turnaround he led in his city.

US 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Julian Castro speaks to Tri-City Young Democrats in Somersworth, New Hampshire, US, Jan. 15, 2019. Brian Snyder, Reuters

JULIAN CASTRO - The secretary of housing and urban development under then-President Barack Obama joined the race on Jan. 12 in his hometown of San Antonio, where he once served as mayor and a city councilman. Castro, 44, the grandson of a Mexican immigrant, is so far the only Hispanic in the field. He has used his family's personal story to criticize Trump's border policies.

Rep. John Delaney enters the stage before speaking at the Iowa Democratic Wing Ding in Clear Lake, Iowa, US, Aug. 10, 2018. KC McGinnis, Reuters

JOHN DELANEY - The former US representative from Maryland was the first Democrat to enter the race in July 2017, long before most candidates began making their moves. Delaney, 55, has focused heavily on campaigning and organizing in Iowa, the state that kicks off the nominating fight in February 2020, making repeated trips there and visiting all 99 of its counties.

US Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) delivers a nomination speech for Senator Bernie Sanders on the second day at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US July 26, 2016. Mike Segar, Reuters

TULSI GABBARD - Gabbard, 37, the first Hindu to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives, announced she would run on Jan. 11. Her campaign has quickly been engulfed in controversy over her past anti-gay activism and statements, and the Hawaii congresswoman was forced to apologize. "In my past, I said and believed things that were wrong," she said.

US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) speaks at a news conference introducing Holton-Arms high school graduates to release a letter from more than a thousand graduates of the school supporting Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and their belief in her accusations against President Donald Trump's US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, Sept. 20, 2018. Yuri Gripas, Reuters

KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND - An outspoken leader in the #MeToo movement against sexual assault and harassment, the senator from New York announced her candidacy on Jan. 15 on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert." Gillibrand, 52, touted her rural roots in upstate New York on a subsequent trip to Iowa and said she had proven her ability to win over more conservative rural voters.

US Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) talks with colleagues as she arrives to attend US President Donald Trump's second State of the Union address to a joint session of the US Congress in the House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol on Capitol Hill in Washington, US Feb. 5, 2019. Jonathan Ernst, Reuters

KAMALA HARRIS - She announced her candidacy on the holiday honoring slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. The daughter of immigrants from Jamaica and India has made a quick impact in a Democratic race that will be heavily influenced by women and minority voters. The 54-year-old, first-term senator from California reported raising $1.5 million online in the first 24 hours of her campaign and drew record ratings on a CNN televised town hall.

US Senator Amy Klobuchar declares her candidacy for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination in Minneapolis, Minnesota, US, February 10, 2019. Eric Miller, Reuters

AMY KLOBUCHAR - She was the first moderate in the crowded field vying to challenge Trump. Klobuchar, 58, gained national attention in 2018 when she sparred with Brett Kavanaugh during Senate hearings on his Supreme Court nomination. Now in her third six-year term as a senator for Minnesota, Klobuchar's campaign announcement came amid news reports that staff in her Senate office were asked to do menial tasks, making it difficult for her to hire high-level campaign strategists.

Potential 2020 US Democratic presidential candidate and US Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) speaks at an Organizing Event in Claremont, New Hampshire, US, Jan. 18, 2019. Brian Snyder, Reuters

ELIZABETH WARREN - The 69-year-old senator from Massachusetts, a leader of the party's liberals and fierce Wall Street critic who was instrumental in creating the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, jumped into the race with a New Year's Eve video release. On visits to states that hold early nominating contests such as Iowa and New Hampshire, she has focused on her populist economic message, promising to fight what she calls a rigged economic system that favors the wealthy.