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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Sanders ‘berns’ Tucson for the second time

Sam Gross

On Friday, Sen. Bernie Sanders took to the Tucson Convention Center just days before the March 22 Arizona presidential primary, in which 75 Democratic delegates are up for grabs in the winner take all election. 

The Vermont senator rolled through Tucson to urge a stronger voter turnout and tackle national issues regarding public welfare. 

While some supporters traveled far and wide to see the Democratic candidate, UA grad and former president of the Associated Students of the University of Arizona, Morgan Abraham, helped open the rally as the current President of the Pima County Young Democrats.

Opening for presidential candidate, Abraham explained that the push for education funding is a reason his voting Sanders.  

“The only way to take back our country is to invest in education,” Abraham said. 

After Abraham, Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva, the first congressman to express support for Sander, took the floor to introduce the Vermont senator and his wife, Jane. 

Many of his supporters are hopeful that he will make a change regarding student debt and are inspired by his support for the middle class.

Janelle Johnson, a Sanders supporter, said that while there are some aspects of his campaign that she is apprehensive about, one thing she is sure of is where he stands with the working class and young generation.

“I like that he is for the middle class and for the young people,” Johnson said. “He’s been working for civil rights for several years and he’s and activist. That’s what I do like about him.”

During his speech, he expressed that his campaign was free from billionaire funding and hopes to serve the middle class. 

“This campaign is supported by working families,” Sanders said. “Not Wall Street.” 

Throughout his campaign trail, Sanders has been a strong supporter of tackling student debt with instilling tuition free public universities. 

Expanding further on public welfare, the Democratic candidate hopes to place a ban on the private prison system and plans to take marijuana possession off the list of federal crimes. 

“How about investing in jobs and education rather than jails,” Sanders said. “…I will introduce legislation that takes marijuana out of federal controlled substances.”

Along with talking prison and drugs issues, Sanders said that, if elected, he will implement a universal healthcare system and include paid leave for working parents.

Following the Tucson rally, Cathleen Hall a UA grad and a Tucson middle school teacher, is confident that Sanders’s plans will help improve current conditions for students and within the healthcare system.  

“I think that giving people a free college education is definitely an important, I have $40,000 in student loan debt,” Hall said. “The healthcare is also definitely going to help, especially in Arizona.”     

Follow Lauren Renteria on Twitter.

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