PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Hundreds of Bernie Sanders supporters, speakers, and musicians rallied at the State House Saturday morning for the Democratic presidential hopeful.
The event doubled as a volunteer recruitment drive to spread Sanders’ message and get as many votes before Rhode Island’s primary on April 26. Sanders is facing Hillary Clinton, whose campaign sent former president Bill Clinton to Warwick to sump for her earlier this week.
Rhode Island state lawmakers who have already endorsed Sanders joined Saturday’s march, including Rep. J. Aaron Regunberg, D-Providence, who spoke to the crowd.
Regunberg got the crowd motivated by talking about the naysayers, saying: “you know, I hear, ‘these kids, they don’t know how the real world works. They’re naive – when they grow up, they’ll understand how high in the sky this Bernie guy is.’ I don’t know about the young people here today but I am not taking that anymore.”
Regunberg, 26, went on to say that “our generation is maybe the most realistic, the least naive, of any I could think of.”
Another Sanders supporter, Michael Greig, told Eyewitness News why he is “feeling the Bern.”
“Social injustice and economic state of the state and the country is very imbalanced, and I think Bernie Sanders has the path to correct that and get us to the right future,” he said.
Shannon Salome calls herself a huge Bernie supporter: she’s a fan of Sanders’ plan to tackle student loan debt.
“Bernie is the first honest politician we’ve seen in any campaign,” Salome told Eyewitness News. “I’m a huge fan of the fact that he wants to really take [student loan debt] head on, because other campaigns don’t really address that problem.”
Salome also told Eyewitness News she has never been involved in a political campaign until Sanders, and she has never voted.
Hillary Clinton’s Rhode Island campaign had scheduled an immigration roundtable with Congressman David Cicilline, as well as Mayors James Diossa of Central Falls and Jorge Elorza of Providence, but Eyewitness News learned it was postponed due to a very small turnout Saturday afternoon.