EAST LANSING, Mich. – On Thursday, Oct. 6, Sen. Bernie Sanders held a rally to generate support for Hillary Clinton at Michigan State University. Clinton is the Democratic Party’s nominee in the upcoming presidential election.
Sanders sought to persuade millennial voters who supported him in the primary election that Clinton shares his political views. His last visit to the university was in March when he was still running to be the democratic nominee.
Sanders was met with applause and chants of “Bernie” as he took the stage on Adams Field. A small crowd was present for Sanders’ speech, which was mostly focused on college tuition and rising interest rates.
“We believe that you are the future of this country,” said Sanders as he addressed the students. “We believe that it is absolutely absurd that hundreds of thousands of bright young people, who have the qualifications and the desire, cannot go to college for one reason: their families lack the money.”
Sanders also talked about Donald Trump, the Republican Party’s nominee for president. His face was ridden with disgust as he spoke of Trump’s comments about immigrants and women’s rights.
Judge Deborah Thomas, a guest speaker at the rally, pleaded for students to register to vote.
“You have the ability to decide what justice looks like for all people, all of the time,” said Thomas, who is currently running for a seat on the Michigan Supreme Court.
The rally started at 3:45 p.m., but only lasted about thirty minutes before a down pour of rain cut the event short.
Zach Bischel, Michigan State University junior and Political Science major was at the rally, said he appreciated how Sanders focused on the wage gap and inequality between classes.
“I really liked how Bernie talked about women and how they are viewed as second class citizens and how Hillary Clinton can and will do something to change that,” said Bischel. “Increasing the wage is also important and I think Bernie hit the nail on the head with describing how the minimum wage needs to become a liveable wage.”
Bischel is currently employed at the state capitol in Lansing, and he says his job is “hectic” this time of the year.
“With the presidential elections taking place we are preparing for significant changes and possible bill proposals based upon the winner of presidency,” said Bischel. “We are swamped almost every day in the legislation office.”
After the rally, a group of Black Lives Matter protesters gathered on the median of Grand River Avenue near Abbott Road. Protesters roamed the field after the rally, trying to persuade attendees of the rally to join them on the median. The protest was unrelated to the rally, but the close-quarters made it easy for the two to mingle.