Thousands of Hillary Clinton supporters turned out on May 24 to the democratic candidate’s rally held at the University of California, Riverside’s old Physical Education building, though only around half of the guests who RSVP’d were allowed in the doors. Aimed towards college students, a demographic that plays a quintessential role in her rival democratic candidate Bernie Sanders’ campaign and one which her campaign gains little support from; the rally appealed to Clinton’s vast political experience and plans for public education reform.
The rally began with a speech by State Sen. Richard Roth, D-Riverside, wherein he held nothing back in his endorsement of Clinton, addressing her as “the next president of the United States.”
A flurry of speakers, all public and political figures within the campaign, followed Roth’s speech, each aimed towards a distinct target demographic.
Tribal Chairman of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians, Mark Macarro, spoke on how far the U.S. has progressed in relations with American Indians and ensured the audience that there’s only one candidate who will provide Indians with what he calls the proper tools; education, self-determination, healthcare, to progress further.
“Indian country stands with Hillary,” Macarro said.
American actor Jason George, notable for his role in the popular TV show, “Grey’s Anatomy,” then gave a rather rambunctious speech, attempting to tap into the crowd’s high spirits. He endorsed Clinton as being the most experienced and capable candidates, insinuating that Clinton is contested because she is a woman.
The United Nurses Association of California Director of Representation, Suzanne Delaney, introduced the democratic candidate to the crowd. Immediately after taking the stage, Clinton relayed her apologies to the 1,500 supporters who were unable to enter the rally.
Clinton’s speech began with a hefty amount of criticism of Republican nominee Donald Trump, whose dangerous rhetoric has alienated countless Americans.
“You gotta sorta pinch yourself when you hear some of what Trump is saying. It is something that we have to take seriously my friends… We may have talked about how we have a bully pulpit in the White House but that doesn’t mean we need a bully in the White House,” Clinton said.
Clinton then touched on her economic plans, saying that the economy always does better when the Democratic party is in charge. The super-pac funded candidate stated that the government needs to raise taxes on the wealthy and raise the federal minimum wage in order to lessen the wide income gap.
The senator then spoke on climate change issues, less-expensive public education, and reforms dealing with mental illness.
She quickly moved onto foreign affairs, highlighting her experience and importance in the killing of Al-Qaeda terrorist Osama Bin Laden.
Tensions arose as Hillary supporters exited the Physical Education building, with no other way to exit than towards the protesters. In the heat of the moment, as the screams from both sides grew louder, a student protester attempted to punch one of the Clinton supporters. UC officials quickly came and attempted to lower the tensions but oddly no police intervened.
The democratic primary in California will be on June 7. A Clinton win will be a horrible blow to the Sanders’ campaign as it will just be one more step towards ensuring her nomination as the Democratic presidential candidate.