By Newsweek |
Andrew Yang Defends 2020 Platform Against Meghan McCain, Skeptical 'The View' Hosts
Democratic 2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang defended several non-mainstream platform points from skeptical The View hosts Monday.
Yang continued to defend his "Freedom Dividend" to give every American $1,000 each month in order for the country's wealthiest corporations to reinvest in its own people. Yang reiterated that U.S. Founding Father Thomas Paine and civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. both championed a divided for all Americans that he said would be paid for by the "big winners of the 21st Century" economy" including Amazon and Apple.
Yang explained that his "Make America Think Harder" campaign slogan aims to get Americans "focused on the fact that it's certainly not immigrants that are causing these problems." He also laid out how the $1,000 monthly payment back to Americans would allow people such as his wife -- who raises their children and takes care of their home -- to be viewed in the economy and by society as having a value of more than "zero dollars."
Yang said the "Freedom Dividend" would also allow people trapped in jobs under abusive managers or working for little cash to use that money to move onward and upward in more entrepreneurial or healthy routes.
While Yang appeared to receive tacit support from co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg and Sunny Hostin, fellow hosts Meghan McCain and Joy Behar pushed back on several of his platform points they labeled as bizarre.
After detailing how his "freedom dividend" for all Americans aged 18 on up, Behar asked, "Why should rich white people get a thousand dollars a month?"
"The great thing is it will remind them they are still an American," Yang said, drawing some applause from the audience.
McCain then pushed back, "Nobody at this table needs an extra $1,000 a month."
Hostin and Goldberg defended the plan, saying McCain or any other wealthier American would have the option to give that money to charity or "veterans on the street," as McCain suggested.
"That's what he's saying about it 'reminds you that you're an American,'" Goldberg said. "It's not just about what you do for yourself, it's what you do for other folks, too."
Yang compared the $1,000-a-month U.S. citizen plan to the Alaska Petroleum Fund which gives up to a few thousand dollars each year to residents as a way of dispersing the vast wealth drawn from state lands. He argued that giving the money to everyone "depoliticizes and destigmatizes" the system.
In regards to who would pay the trillion-dollar tab on the plan, Yang replied, "The big winners of the 21st century economy including Amazon, a trillion-dollar company that paid $0 in taxes, Apple, Netflix, and Google."
Yang expressed his support for universal health care and said potential impeachment proceedings involving President Donald Trump should be pushed back until after Robert Mueller testifies before Congress later this month.
McCain pressed Yang about his opposition to circumcision for baby boys, saying "parents need to educate themselves." A skeptical-sounding McCain then asked him, "You also believe in free marriage counseling?"
"The data shows that if you grow up in a two-parent household certain outcomes are more likely so from a societal perspective it makes perfect sense to try and keep couples together if they want to stay together," Yang replied.
"So would that just be like a social worker for every couple in America?" McCain asked.
"No, it would be a marriage counseling stipend, essentially, where if you decide to seek marriage counseling they can just go and gate paid by the program."
"My version of marriage counseling is drinking Jack Daniels, shooting some guns and hanging out, so like, it works," McCain said.
"At each other?" Behar quipped.
"This universal peg for every hole is always my problem with the left right now -- every American is different, every American does things in different ways," McCain said.
Yang suggested staffing a White House psychologist, which McCain and the other hosts applauded with laughter. But Yang went on to explain that he wants to see a destigmatization of mental health issues across the country. Yang also noted he supported having such a position before Trump was elected into office.
Overall, Yang said the 2020 Democratic campaign is "dedicated to trying to solve the problems that got Donald Trump elected."