Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton reaches out to the Inland Empire at UC Riverside
By Taven Strickert
Hillary Clinton courted potential voters at UC Riverside on May 24 where she was met by a crowd of nearly 2,000 people that were in attendance to both support and protest Clinton’s message.
Her supporters were diverse, but attracted a lower number of youth when compared to the Bernie Sanders rally which ended only two hours earlier. Supporters such as Riverside resident Patricia Korzec commented on this diversity.
“I am not voting for her because she is a woman. I am voting because she is the most qualified,” Korzec said. “Look around you. There are men and women, people of every race and age. Hillary stands for all of us.”
Clinton had many supporters on stage including Mark Macarro, Pechanga tribal chairman, State Senator Richard Ross, Susan Delaney an Riverside City College and UC Riverside graduate, Jason George, Grey’s Anatomy actor and Mary Steenburgen, actor and Clinton’s personal friend of 40 years.
“Indian country is with Hillary Rodham Clinton,” Macarro shouted to a roar of applause.
“Hillary Clinton, our next president, has spent her entire public life helping all of us,” Ross said.
“I’m not voting for Hillary because she’s a women,” George said. “I didn’t vote for Barack Obama because he is black … but it was a perk.”
George addressed the issue with gun control, bringing it home to the San Bernardino shooting.
Susan Delaney is a registered nurse of 34 years and union member of the United Nurses Association. With her was her 84 year old mother and 26 year old daughter, whom Clinton personally thanked for their dedication to bring healthcare to everyone.
The crowd seemed to agree that Hillary had the most experience and was the most likely to defeat Trump.
“In 30 years what has Bernie gotten done? Just look at Hillary’s record,” said RCC student Ezekiel Buchanan. “It was inspiring when the hecklers were booed out.”
A crowd of Hillary protesters gathered outside of the building chanting “Hey ho, Hillary has got to go.”
“Hillary stands for lies and corruption. She invades countries, orchestrates cover ups and changes her mind depending on the crowd,” said Natalie Martinez, a UCR student.
Some of the Hillary supporters felt the protesters went too far.
“My rights were violated. They shoved megaphones and signs in my face. I know they have a right to protest, but I have a right to hear Hillary’s message without being afraid,” Korzec said.
Even some attendees that were protesting admitted that the actions of some were troubling.
“It’s not constructive,” said UCR student Martin Liu. “Hillary supporters are already convinced and all this aggression doesn’t help matters.”
Clinton addressed many issues with Republican candidate Donald Trump, such as his personal failed economics, as Clinton is preparing for the general election as the presumptive nominee.
“Why would we want someone who profited from the housing market crash,” said Clinton. “He has filed for bankruptcy how many times?” addressing the crowd.
“Four times Hillary!” the crowd exclaimed back zealously.
The rally was quite charged and it is clear given the atmosphere at both rallies. Both sides of the Democratic ticket are earnestly preparing their supporters for the June 7 primaries as well as seeking out last minute converts.