Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang took the stage for his Los Angeles rally Monday – available to watch on YouTube – and hit the usual topics of his campaign with the energy he has become known for. He touched on the increasing wave of automation hitting the economy, the jobs losses stemming from this wave, and the apathy of politicians in Washington when it comes to addressing this problem, which he calls the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
The 44-year-old entrepreneur also addressed Donald Trump and suggested the president knows that he is a threat. After chants of “Yang beats Trump,” the potential Democratic presidential nominee responded.
“Yang does beat Trump, Los Angeles. It’s like a game of rock, paper, scissors, and if Donald Trump’s the scissors, I’m the f*cking rock.”
Trump has yet to address Yang, although he did respond to journalist and political commentator Kassy Dillon, who referenced Yang on Twitter. The interaction sparked the “TrumpFearsYang” hashtag and many took it as confirmation that the president is aware of Yang and choosing not to address him.
Throughout the course of his campaign, Yang has focused on the underlying problems in the U.S. economy that he believes are dividing the country, which has earned him both support and criticism from across the political spectrum. Just as his critics can be found on both sides of the political aisle, he also draws various supporters that are drawn to his focus on unifying and helping Americans of all backgrounds.
“He represents something that’s beyond politics,” said Lee-kai Wong, a 34-year-old genetics lab worker at UCLA, per The Los Angeles Times. “The way he talks about the country — it’s a message of healing. I think we need a little more mercy and forgiveness.”
— Elex Michaelson (@Elex_Michaelson) October 1, 2019
Tony Moreno, a 52-year-old professional driver from Ontario, suggested that Yang is able to break the cultural and political barriers within each political spectrum.
“We’re all Americans first. He’s not pointing fingers.”
Outside of Yang’s speech, the rally reportedly contained the same concert-like energy that Yang — who has made headlines for crowd surfing and dancing — has made his signature. According to a tweet from Yang’s campaign manager, Zach Graumann, the event had everything from pyrotechnics and breakdancers to bobbleheads.
The entrepreneur is currently in sixth place in the polls with 3.6 percent support. He is set to appear on the October debate stage. To qualify for the November debate, he must gain 3 percent support — or higher –in one more DNC-approved poll.
Although Yang is still in the single digits in the polls, he recently hit 8 percent support in an Emerson poll placing him in fourth — his highest position yet. He has also received support and praise from many prominent figures, including tech entrepreneur Elon Musk, actor Tommy Chong, businessman Dan Price, and actress Michelle Rodriguez.