The Scarlet & Black

The Independent Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black


Ramaswamy, an investor, former pharmaceutical company CEO and author, is running as a self-described political outsider, relying on his charisma, intelligence and personal wealth to gain the voters’ attention. He has gained more support than many predicted, potentially a result of his significant ground-game in Iowa that includes more events than any other candidate. Without any political experience, Ramaswamy has garnered comparisons to Trump, and his policies are nearly identical on many issues. At 38, he is by far the youngest candidate.

Key Issues:

Abortion: Opposes a national ban but supports six week state bans.

Climate Change: Repeatedly rejects scientific evidence that carbon emissions are hurting the environment, opposing all government efforts to reduce emissions. 

Ukraine War: Said that the U.S. should end military aid, and Ukraine should agree to concede territory to Russia to ensure that Russia and China do not become closer allies.

Immigration: Calls for the militarization of the border and suggested sending troops into Mexico to help defeat the drug cartels. Said he wants to universally deport undocumented immigrants and their American-born children. Vows to eliminate the H1-B visa system that allows immigrants to remain in the U.S. for work.

Trump Investigation: Fiercely denies any Trump wrongdoing and has urged all the Republican candidates to pledge to pardon Trump if elected. Continues to claim collusion between President Biden and the justice department.

China: Vows to forbid many U.S. companies from doing business in China until the Chinese Communist Party falls or “radically reforms.” Said that he would support using military force to defend Taiwan against China if the U.S. is reliant on Taiwan for semiconductors.

Economic Policy: Said he will increase Gross Domestic Product by stopping efforts to combat climate change. Supports a 12 percent flat tax.

Transgender Rights: Claims that transgenderism is a mental illness and has referred to it as a “secular religion.” Supports a national ban on transition care for minors and the elimination of training programs aimed at increasing social acceptance.

Social Security and Medicare: Said he will not cut the programs but has explicitly said that he does not have a plan for keeping them funded.

Israel: Claims that phasing out U.S. aid to Israel is the best path, while continuing to provide Israel with diplomatic support and munitions to defend its homeland.

Democracy: Said that if he were in former Vice-President Mike Pence’s position on Jan. 6, he would not have certified the results of the election unless Congress agreed to majority reform the electoral system. Wants to raise the voting age to 25 unless they serve in the military or pass a civics test. Vows to ban mail-in voting altogether.

Education: Wants to eliminate the Department of Education and introduce greater incentives to transition children out of public schools.

Health Care: Vows to simplify and speed up the approval process for new drugs. Plans to create a more competitive market by eliminating antitrust exemptions for insurers. Said that he cannot promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act because it is contingent on Congress.

Key Endorsements:

Ramaswamy’s one notable endorsement came from Iowa Treasurer Roby Smith.


The Ramaswamy campaign had raised $26 million and had $4 million cash on hand as of October 2023 campaign disclosure reports. Ramaswamy has self-funded roughly $16 million of the $26 million raised. Between Jan. 1, 2023 and Jan. 7, 2024, Ramaswamy’s campaign and super PAC spent $9.97 million on ads in Iowa.


Ramaswamy is polling at 8%, according to the Des Moines Register/NBC News/Mediacom Iowa Poll released on Jan. 13.

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