RICHMOND — While 14 Democratic presidential candidates qualified for Virginia’s March 3 primary, only six remain as Virginia joins 13 other states in voting on Super Tuesday.

The remaining candidates, in alphabetical order, are former Vice President Joe Biden; former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg; U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii; Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota; Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont; and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.

Here is a look at where the Democratic candidates stand on five key issues, according to the candidates’ websites, speeches and news accounts.

College education

Biden: Proposes two years of tuition-free community college; doubling the maximum value of Pell grants to more than $12,000; changing the income-based repayment system for federal student loans to reduce required payments.

Bloomberg: Proposes making two-year public college tuition-free for all and making four-year public college tuition and debt-free for the lowest-income students; doubling the maximum Pell grants; cutting the cap on student-loan payments by 50% and forgiving loans tax-free after 20 years.

Gabbard: Calls for eliminating tuition and fees at four-year public colleges and universities for families that make up to $125,000 a year; proposes eliminating tuition fees for community college.

Klobuchar: Proposes tuition-free one- and two-year community college degrees and technical certifications; doubling the maximum Pell grant to more than $12,000 per year and expanding eligibility to families making up to $100,000; simplifying the financial aid process and letting borrowers refinance student loans to lower rates.

Sanders: Proposes to make public colleges, universities and trade schools tuition free, cancel $1.6 trillion in student debt over the next decade and let low-income students use Pell grants to cover books, housing and transportation.

Warren: Proposes to cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt to help 95% of student loan borrowers; provide “universal tuition free public two- and four-year college and technical school” and ban for-profit colleges from receiving federal aid.


Biden: Calls for a “clean energy revolution” to ensure the U.S. achieves “a 100% clean energy economy” and “reaches net-zero emissions” by 2050; says he would invest $1.7 trillion on “climate and environmental justice” over the next 10 years.

Bloomberg: Proposes: to lead in fighting “the global climate crisis” and “propel the United States” toward a 100% clean energy future; ensure 100% of new vehicles are pollution-free by 2035; “green our buildings to save Americans money on their heating and energy bills.”

Gabbard: Calls for building “a renewable energy economy” by “redirecting the billions spent every year subsidizing the fossil fuel industry” to invest in “the industries of the future;” would ban fracking and require utilities to use 100% renewable resources by 2035.

Klobuchar: Proposes to work with Congress to pass legislation putting the country on a path to 100% net zero emissions by 2050; back “a carbon price” to incentivize reduced pollution; ending federal tax subsidies for fossil fuel exploration and production.

Sanders: Says he would “launch the decade of the Green New Deal” and direct a $16.3 trillion public investment toward the effort. Goals include reaching 100% renewable energy for electricity and transportation by 2030 and “complete decarbonization of the economy by 2050.”

Warren: An original supporter of the Green New Deal, she calls for a 10-year plan for “100% clean energy for America by decarbonizing our electricity, our vehicles and our buildings.” Says a $3 trillion federal investment will leverage trillions more in private investment and create millions of new jobs.

Health care

Biden: Proposes to build on the Affordable Care Act and offer a public health insurance option like Medicare; offer middle-class families a “premium tax credit” to help them buy insurance on the individual marketplace; offer premium-free access to the public option to eligible people in 14 states that have not expanded Medicaid.

Bloomberg: Calls for creating a Medicare-like public option; expanding enrollment in ACA plans, in part, by expanding subsidies; capping out-of-network hospital charges to bring prices down.

Gabbard: Calls for “a single-payer system where everyone contributes and is covered, and that will also allow individuals to access private insurance if they choose.”

Klobuchar: Proposes to add a nonprofit public option that allows people to buy “affordable health insurance coverage through Medicare or Medicaid;” improving the Affordable Care Act by expanding premium subsidies; creating a refundable tax credit to offset long-term care costs.

Sanders: Proposes a Medicare for all single-payer national health insurance program “to provide everyone in America with comprehensive health care coverage, free at the point of service.”

Warren: Proposes Medicare for All as a “long-term goal,” starting by allowing anyone over the age of 50 to opt in.


Biden: Proposes to raise the highest personal rate from 37% to the pre-Trump level of 39.6%, increase the corporate tax rate from 21% to 28%, tax capital gains as ordinary income for those with $1 million in income; impose a 15% minimum tax for corporations with $100 million in income.

Bloomberg: Proposes to restore the top individual rate to 39.6%; place a 5% surtax on incomes above $5 million a year; tax capital gains at the same rate as ordinary income for taxpayers above $1 million; raise the corporate tax rate to 28%.

Gabbard: Calls the Trump tax cuts “a failure”; backs higher taxes on the wealthiest Americans to pay for Medicare for All.

Klobuchar: Proposes to increase the corporate tax rate to 28%; impose a 30% minimum tax for people with incomes above $1 million; update the tax code to simplify withholding for self-employed “gig” workers.

Sanders: Proposes an annual “wealth tax” on people worth $32 million or more, ranging from 1% for a married couple with wealth of $32 million, to 8% on a married couple with wealth of more than $10 billion, with brackets halved for singles; scrap Trump’s business tax cuts, restoring the corporate rate to 35% from 21%.

Warren: Calls for a 2% tax on households worth between $50 million and $1 billion and a 6% tax on “every dollar of net worth above $1 billion”; proposes a 7% tax on every dollar of corporate profits above $100 million; calls for restoring 35% corporate tax rate.

Foreign policy

Biden: Proposes to “reinforce” democracy at home and to strengthen the coalition of democracies that stand with the U.S.; says he will restore “moral leadership” and “mobilize global action on global threats.”

Bloomberg: Proposes to protect Americans against new threats; invest in infrastructure, education and innovation as the basis of U.S. power; “reinvigorate” alliances with U.S. allies and partners.

Gabbard: Calls “regime change wars” wasteful; calls for withdrawing America from “ongoing conflict that achieves nothing and wastes so much.”

Klobuchar: Says she would renew American leadership, repair U.S. alliances, rejoin international agreements, “respond appropriately” to threats and challenges and reassert American values.

Sanders: Says he would focus on democracy, human rights, diplomacy, peace and economic fairness, would “allow Congress to reassert its constitutional role in warmaking” and would “follow the American people, who do not want endless war.”

Warren: Says the U.S. should “leverage all the tools of our national power, not just our military might” and that “endless wars” sap U.S. strength; says the U.S. must remain vigilant about terrorism threats, but “it’s time to bring our troops home.”

Recommended for you

Load comments