Andrew Yang, the entrepreneur and former tech executive whose Democratic presidential campaign has defied expectations and landed him a spot in the first primary debate, joked about his strategy to garner more attention at the next forum after noting he had comparatively little time to speak and claiming his microphone was cut off at times
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"I was only asked two questions over two hours, and that's… there for everyone to see," Yang said on "The View" Monday morning, adding, "We're just thrilled that I have another debate in July and one in September and October to keep getting our ideas out to the American people."
Looking ahead to the next debate, the candidate noted that he'd discussed a creative idea with his staff.
"Well we were joking that maybe I'd have like a sign or something, hold it up," he said. "But we're very confident that that will get more opportunities [to speak.]"
Not only did Yang surprise political observers by becoming one of two candidates with no experience in elected office to earn a spot in the first two primary debates, but he has also already eclipsed the 130,000 unique donor threshold that is one of two requirements (in addition to receiving at least 2% support in four different polls) to make the third debate in September -- one which is expected to feature far fewer participants than the 20 of the first two forums.
Yang, 44, a New York native and the son of Taiwanese immigrants, was one of the earliest candidates to join the race when he announced his campaign in November 2017. Prior to his run, he was the CEO of a test-prep company and founded Venture for America, a non-profit organization focused on training college graduates become entrepreneurs and work at start-ups in underserved cities.
Though his website is filled with policy proposals spanning everything from Medicare-for-all to automatic voter registration, plans to reduce wildfires and even eliminating the penny, Yang's signature proposal is what he labels the "Freedom Dividend," a payment of $1,000 per month that would be distributed to every American 18 years of age and older. The universal basic income plan would be paid for with a value-added tax that Yang says would also result in major retailers like Amazon paying more in taxes than under the current tax code.
“It actually would help build a more human centered economy,” Yang said about his policy proposal, noting it would create a “trickle up economy, because what I call the Trickle Up economy, because it allow more people to do the kind of work that they want to do.
Yang's campaign has garnered further attention for a fervent online fanbase, one whose utilization of pictures, videos and memes has drawn comparisons to the President Trump's 2016 campaign. In the last cycle, Trump's digital presence was credited, in part, with expanding his base of support beyond traditional Republican voters.