Hillary Clinton Blasts Trump at City Hall Rally
Backed by local Democratic leaders past and present, Hillary Clinton held a boisterous, picturesque rally inside the City Hall courtyard a day before Pennsylvania and four other states vote in presidential primaries.
Clinton is expected to win tomorrow’s election against Bernie Sanders in Pennsylvania. A poll released today by Republican-leaning firm Harper Polling puts her in front, 61 to 33 percent. She didn’t mention her Democratic rival for the nomination during the event, instead talking in stark terms about the Republican candidates.
“When Donald Trump talks about not caring about whether more countries develop nuclear weapons, that is so contrary to what we have tried to do for the last 70 years,” Clinton said. “We can’t have someone running for president who basically says, ‘I don’t care if countries develop nuclear weapons’ — making our world all that much more dangerous. No! And when he says no Muslims can come into America, he is sending a message to the entire world that will make it more difficult for us to defeat ISIS. We have to have a coalition with Muslim-majority nations, and that is exactly what I will do.”
Clinton was preceded by speeches by Rep. Bob Brady (who led a contest among different sections of the court to see who could cheer louder, as if he were at an Eagles game) and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf. former mayor and former governor Ed Rendell and City Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell were also in attendance.
In contrast to some previous Clinton appearances in the city, there were no interruptions at the early evening City Hall event. The only disturbance in the crowd was a woman who fainted about halfway through Clinton’s 17-minute speech. A group called Black Men for Bernie had a convoy of minivans outside the event, but it was barely audible inside and only for a brief moment.
— Dan McQuade (@dhm) April 25, 2016
Also, the band at the Clinton rally played Salt-N-Pepa’s “Push It.”
Mayor Jim Kenney brought Clinton to the stage. She sounded more like a general-election candidate than a primary contender, perhaps buoyed by her big delegate lead and her solid polling results in all five states that vote Tuesday. In addition to Pennsylvania, voters in Maryland, Delaware, Connecticut and Rhode Island head to the polls tomorrow. PredictWire gives her 90-plus percent odds in all states but Rhode Island (where she’s at more than 60 percent.)
Clinton leads Sanders in pledged delegates, 1,446 to 1,205, padding her lead with a big advantage (483-41) in un-pledged delegates. A Democratic candidate needs a simple majority, 2,384 delegates, to win the nomination.
She rattled through a list of policies she supports: Better and cheaper education all the way to college (she said community college should be free), passing more restrictive gun laws and fighting against “gun culture”, expanding Obamacare (“Before Obamacare, there was something called Hillarycare”), “repealing” the Citizens United decision and preventing Republicans from dictating economic policy.
“It wasn’t so long ago, when my husband was president, we had 23 million new jobs and incomes went up for everybody,” Clinton said. “And we can do it again. What interrupted it was a Republican president. He came along and we went back to trickle-down economics. Didn’t work then; won’t work now.” The crowd booed. “That’s exactly the right response,” she said.
The crowd was completely pro-Clinton, in contrast to previous rallies. On April 20th last week, Black Lives Matter protesters were booted from a Hillary for President rally at The Fillmore in Fishtown. According to Philadelphia magazine’s Malcolm Burnley, a group of about 10 protesters chanted “You’re Not Welcome Here” and “Stop Killing Black People” before being escorted from the event.
Two of those protesters, Erica Mines and Rufus Farmer, had engaged in a back-and-forth with President Bill Clinton at a playground gym in Mt. Airy. The two, but mostly Mines, debated Bill Clinton on the 1994 crime bill, with the former president later saying he “almost wants to apologize” for his comments.
Sanders held a competing rally at Drexel at around the same time as Clinton’s get-out-the-vote event. Polls are open tomorrow from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. (voters in line by 8 p.m. will be allowed to vote).
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