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Andrew Yang joins CNN as a political commentator

Updated 3:27 PM ET, Wed February 19, 2020

Washington (CNN) - Former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang is joining CNN as a political commentator, the network announced Wednesday.

"I'm excited to join @CNN to help shed light on the election and the candidates' experiences," Yang wrote in a tweet following the announcement. "Learned a lot these past months and am glad to contribute to the public discussion."

He'll appear on the network in his new capacity later Wednesday, he added.

Yang, a businessman who ended his campaign last week, rose from obscurity to become a highly-visible candidate, rallying a coalition of liberal Democrats, libertarians and some disaffected Republicans to form a devoted group of followers known as the Yang Gang.

A prominent platform in his campaign was his so-called Freedom Dividend, a plan to give every American adult $1,000 a month universal basic income that he argued would alleviate a host of social ills and eradicate poverty.

Yang's campaign was defined by the candidate's happy go-lucky style. Videos of him singing in a church choir, dancing to the "Cupid Shuffle" and crowdsurfing at events regularly went viral, helping burnish his image as a candidate just happy to be with his fans.

He also often used high-profile moments to compliment his opponents. After former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke dropped out and before a Democratic debate where they would have been standing next to each other, Yang simply tweeted, "I miss Beto." After New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker failed to qualify for a debate stage, Yang used yet another debate stage moment to tell voters, "Cory will be back," a move that was appreciated by Booker and his top campaign aides.

This story has been updated to include reaction from Yang.


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