Democratic debate night: Fact checking the candidates on the issues

Posted on: June 26th, 2019 by ABC News No Comments

Joe Raedle/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Ten 2020 contenders are on the stage Wednesday night for the first of two Democratic presidential debates in Miami. Our team of journalists from ABC News reviewed some of the candidates’ statements in an effort to provide additional context, details and information.

Here’s ABC News’ fact check of the debate between Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, Sen. Cory Booker, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Gov. Jay Inslee, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, former Rep. John Delaney, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, Rep. Tim Ryan and Mayor Bill de Blasio:

FACT CHECK: Booker says Haliburton and Amazon ‘pay nothing in taxes’

Sen. Cory Booker: “I will single out companies like Halliburton or Amazon that pay nothing in taxes and need to change that. When it comes to antitrust law, what I will do is, number one, appoint judges that will enforce it.”

Amazon paid no federal taxes in 2017 and 2018 despite record U.S. profits, according to a report from the Institute on Taxation and Economic policy. In previous years, the company has paid federal income taxes but at a much lower rate. President Donald Trump, in 2018, even tweeted that companies like Amazon do indeed pay “little or no taxes to state and local governments.” The report also found that Halliburton managed to pay little in federal taxes, due to large corporate tax breaks.

FACT CHECK: Klobuchar says big pharma doesn’t “own” her

Sen. Amy Klobuchar: “And so my proposal is to do something about pharma, to take them on, to allow negotiation under Medicare, to bring in less expensive drugs from other countries and pharma thinks they own Washington, well they don’t own me.”

Klobuchar has accepted over $400,000 from the pharmaceutical industry over the course of her career, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. By comparison, pharmaceutical companies are not in the list of top donors for other candidates like Sen. Elizabeth Warren or Sen. Bernie Sanders.

The Minnesota Democrat has also received at least $22,025 from individuals associated with the Minnesota-based medical and pharmaceutical company named Medtronic, including $5,600 from the company’s executive committee member Brad Lerman, $5,400 from board member Kendall Powell and $2,800 from executive VP and CFO Karen Parkhill. (View itemized FEC data here)

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