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February 19, 2019

Bernie Sanders officially announces 2020 presidential campaign

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders announced his bid for president in 2020, marking his second consecutive run after vying for the Democratic nomination against Hillary Clinton in 2016.

The news first came during an interview with Vermont Public Radio, after which Sanders, 77, sent an email to his followers with a video message.

RELATED: New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker officially joins the 2020 presidential race

"I am asking you to join me today as part of an unprecedented and historic grassroots campaign that will begin with at least a million people from across the country," Sanders said in the message.

Sanders enters the race as one of the Democratic Party's most popular leaders, a shift compared to his last campaign when he was viewed more as an outsider to mainstream politics. Several tenants of Sanders' progressive, democratic socialist platform include healthcare expansion, strengthening social security, and making higher education free.

In his announcement, Sanders also took some time to describe President Donald Trump as "a pathological liar, a fraud, a racist, a sexist, a xenophobe," emphasizing the importance of defeating the Republican president in 2020.

"Our campaign is about transforming our country and creating a government based on the principles of economic, social, racial and environmental justice," Sanders said.

Sanders joins an already full field of politicians aiming for the Democratic nomination, even as former Vice President Joe Biden has yet to confirm whether he will also be running. New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, California Sen. Kamala Harris, and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, are among six other major candidates in the running.

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