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2020 Presidential Hopefuls Honored Their Mothers With Heartfelt Tributes For Mother's Day

The Feels

Presidential candidates for the 2020 election dedicated some time on the campaign trail to thank their moms on the occasion of Mother's Day.

Many expressed their gratitude for their mothers' love, guidance, and the encouragement to help carve themselves a path to become future leaders.


ABC News spoke with some of the hopefuls running in the race.

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg thanked his mother, Jennifer Anne Montgomery, a former Notre Dame professor.

"All through my upbringing, my mother gave me the best possible mix of love, encouragement, attention and space. At the core of my current effort is the chance to live out the values that I was raised with, and so mom is part of this campaign in even more ways than she knows."

Andrew Yang showed it is never too late to express gratitude.

He thanked his mother Nancy Yang, who is an immigrant from Taiwan and moved to the United States in the 1960s, with her husband Kei Hsiung Yang.

"Thank you, mom, for being there for me every day even when it was a pain and I was not grateful. I'm grateful now. I love you very much. Happy Mother's Day,"

A decade after Senator Kamala Harris's mother Shyamala Gopalan passed away, Harris remains eternally grateful for her Indian immigrant mother, who instilled in her the courage to act instead of complaining.

"She was smart and tough and fierce and protective. She was generous, loyal and funny. She had only two goals in life: to raise her two daughters and to end breast cancer."

Senator Kristin Gillibrand's mother, Polly Edwina Rutnik, is her fiercest ally and gave her unwavering support to seek a higher office.

"She was the only one who believed I could win my first race and she taught me how to believe in myself. I would not be where I am today without her love and support."

Rep. Tim Ryan was only seven years old when his parents divorced, but that didn't stop his mother, Rochelle Maria Rizzi, from successfully raising her son as a single mother.

"My mom always believed in me, and for a kid that is everything."

Senator Cory Booker said his mother, Carolyn Rose, once told him that "service is the rent you pay for living," and that powerful mantra has become an inspiration for him to pursue a political career as a way to work to pay it forward.

"I can always count on her to keep me grounded while also inspiring and pushing me to reach higher no matter what the obstacles are."

Rep. Seth Moulton said of his mother, Lynn Alice, who was a secretary:

"I feel lucky every day to have a mother who is so devoted to my brother, sister and me, but especially on Mother's Day. Here's to you mom!"

Republican politician and former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld's mother Mary Nichols Weld was a descendant of William Floyd, who was a signer of the U.S. Declaration of Independence. Weld plans to primary against President Trump for the Republican nomination.

Weld's tribute to his mother is humble in nature.

"This is me and my mother having a snack at camp, nothing but the best: Ritz crackers and Hellman's mayo ... she read me 'Wind in the Willows' and 'Old Mother West Wind,' both of which I read every page of to all my children."

Joe Biden said of his late mother, Catherine Eugenia Finnegan:

"My mom was an incredible woman, and I miss her. She would always tell us that 'courage is the greatest virtue because without courage you cannot love with abandon.' She lived her life that way, loving us with abandon."

Democratic candidate Wayne Messam shared some lessons he learned from his mother, Delsey.

"She encouraged me to be a positive person, dream big and never be afraid to do what others aren't willing to do for the benefit of others."

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said of her mom Carol:

"My mom is truly amazing — a teacher, entrepreneur, wife and mother to 5 children — she has inspired me throughout my life through her example of strength, patience, kindness, courage, integrity and unconditional love."

Texan candidate Beto O'Rourke called his mother Melissa a "great role model" for her kindness towards others.

"I really lucked out by having a mom who truly loves her family unconditionally, who encourages us and who is a great role model that inspires me every day with her kindness and the generosity she shows to everyone."

Marianne Willamson paid tribute to her mother, Sophie Ann.

"I didn't realize when I was growing up how lucky I was to have such good and loving parents, but I realize it now."

Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet's mother Susanne Klejman is a survivor of the Holocaust who's history inspired her son to pursue politics.

"She was able to provide her kids more chances than she ever had, instilling in [me] the belief that our job as Americans is to extend opportunity so others can rise."

Julian Castro's mother Maria "Rosie" Castro was a political activist who helped establish Chicano political party La Raza Unida and inspired both Castro and his twin brother, Representative Joaquin Castro, to run for public service.

"My role model, my inspiration in public service and the best part is she's my mom."

Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper expressed his gratitude for his mother Anne Doughten.

"She taught me that we have an obligation to create joy and happiness in our lives. Thanks, mom, and to all moms, for showing us the way."

Mother's day proved that behind every great candidate is always a powerful woman.

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