Steyer touts business experience in economic address

 Steyer touts business experience in economic address
© Greg Nash

Democratic presidential candidate Tom SteyerTom SteyerOvernight Energy: 'Eye of fire,' Exxon lobbyist's comments fuel renewed attacks on oil industry | Celebrities push Biden to oppose controversial Minnesota pipeline | More than 75 companies ask Congress to pass clean electricity standard Celebrities push Biden to oppose controversial Minnesota pipeline Six things to watch as California heads for recall election MORE, a billionaire philanthropist, is pitching himself to Iowa voters as the best candidate to face President TrumpDonald TrumpMyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News Haaland, Native American leaders press for Indigenous land protections Simone Biles, Vince Lombardi and the courage to walk away MORE based on his years of experience as a businessman. 

Steyer will directly take on the four top-tier candidates in the 2020 Democratic race during a speech on Monday morning in Iowa City, arguing that the party needs a nominee who has built a business from the ground up rather than one with a record of public service. 

“Look, I have a lot of respect for the four leading Democratic candidates in this race. But here’s the truth: None of them — not [former] Vice President [Joe] Biden, not Sen. [Elizabeth] Warren [D-Mass.], not Sen. [Bernie] Sanders [I-Vt.], not [South Bend, Ind.,] Mayor Pete [Buttigieg] — have built or run a successful, international business,” Steyer will say, according to prepared remarks shared by his campaign. “None of them have a private sector track record of creating jobs — none of them have first-hand experience growing wealth and prosperity."

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Steyer will tell the crowd that the party nominated “the most experienced and qualified candidate in history” in 2016 and “Trump still prevailed.” 

“If Democrats want to win in 2020, we need to realize that Donald Trump is a different kind of candidate, who presents different challenges than anyone who has come before him,” Steyer will say. 

“Conventional wisdom won’t work against Trump. We need new thinking, and new leadership. And we know this will come down to the economy. Presidential elections always do."

Steyer will also hit the other billionaire in the Democratic race, former New York City Michael BloombergMichael BloombergWHO leader issues warning on 'harmful' e-cigarettes Six months in, two challenges could define Biden's presidency Why Democrats' .5 trillion reconciliation bill is a losing game MORE, reminding the crowd that Bloomberg does not support a wealth tax like he does. Sanders and Warren also support plans for a wealth tax. 

Steyer’s wealth tax would kick in with a 1 percent tax on anyone worth $32 million or more. The tax increases to 1.5 percent at $500 million and 2 percent at $1 billion, according to his remarks.