Presidential hopeful Tom Steyer makes campaign stops in Triangle, tours McDougald Terrace

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- Democratic Presidential Candidate Tom Steyer is making some waves in the party with his recent inclusion into the first debate of 2020, with the Iowa Caucus fast approaching.

Steyer made several stops in the Triangle on Saturday including a meet and greet brunch at NCCU and getting a tour of McDougald Terrace, the community plagued by carbon monoxide issues.

"This is a nation-wide issue, it really is," Steyer added on the crisis going on in Durham's oldest and largest public housing community.

Residents learned Friday they will have to spend at least another week in hotels after a voluntary evacuation earlier this month.

SEE ALSO | Read our full coverage of the concerns at McDougald Terrace

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One of Steyer's missions is addressing inequality on every level, including housing.

"It determines where your kids go to school, the air you breathe, the safety of the streets that you live on, how long it takes you to get to work," Steyer said.

A way to tackle the issue, according to Steyer, is putting hundreds of billions of dollars into infrastructure and getting the big corporations out of the government.

RELATED: Who is Tom Steyer? What to know about the Democratic 2020 candidate

The billionaire adds his storied business background gives him an edge in these primary elections.

"When I talk about housing and affordable housing, I'm also talking about climate, I'm talking about job creation around the country," Steyer said.

The Democratic candidate making his way into the upcoming debate thanks in part to his surging poll numbers in Nevada and South Carolina, spending around $119 million on TV ads nationwide.

With the Iowa Caucus weeks away and the debate on Tuesday, Steyer believes he has an opportunity to get his name out there to the average voter.

"Everybody else on that stage is a career politician. I'm an outsider, who's worked putting together coalitions of ordinary American citizens to take back the government from corporations, and I've been winning for a decade," Steyer said.

Sunday, Steyer plans to go to the Goldsboro church of civil rights leader Rev. William Barber, Greenleaf Christian Church, for an anti-poverty forum at 2 p.m.

Steyer qualified for Tuesday's Democratic presidential debate in Iowa by hitting polling and donor thresholds set by the Democratic National Committee. Steyer has pushed proposals on immigration, combating climate change and helping historically black colleges and universities.
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