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Monday, March 18 , 2019, 9:59 am | Fair 59º

 
 
 
 
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Clinton Brings Her Message to UCSB

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Presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York speaks to a diverse crowd at UCSB on Thursday night.

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To a crowd of about 1,000 — with more in overflow areas — presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Clinton brought her message to the Pavilion Gym at the UCSB recreation center on Thursday night.

The audience, listening to a medley of rock ‘n’ roll tunes in and out of the center, was revved up by the time Clinton took center stage after she’d been introduced by the president of the Associated Students, Stephanie Brower. In her navy pantsuit and pink shirt, the Democrat from New York caught many of those in attendance off-guard with her unexpected visit to Santa Barbara. Many who tried to attend the event were turned away at the door.

The crowd was composed of college students, for the most part, but a number of people who weren’t affiliated with UCSB attended Thursday night’s event also.

 

"We came up from Ojai," said Marcia Doty, who conceded that she was "on the fence" when it comes to where she stands on Clinton for president. Doty and her friends Celeste Matesevac and Karin Quimby appeared to be more than ready for Clinton’s visit. Unlike her friend Doty, Quimby said there is no doubt about her presidential pick. "Clinton is the strongest candidate," Quimby, who commutes from Ojai to her job in Santa Barbara. "She has the smartest people."

Taking the stage about 8 p.m., Clinton spoke to the crowd for about 40 minutes on several topics: failures of the Bush administration; health care; education; the economy; and the war in Iraq.

"We have a lot of work to do," the former first lady said. "Every time I think that I cannot be outraged any more by the Bush administration ..." Clinton said after telling the enthusiastic group about how she was appalled to learn of the Pentagon’s plan to take back sign-up bonus money to military personnel who had gotten injured during the war in Iraq.

The sentator from New York did not spend all of her time bashing the Bush administration, however. She laid out her plan for getting this country, "back on track."

{mosimage}Law-enforcement hustled a young man out of the rec center after he displayed a sign that read, "How’s Monica?" His display didn’t appear to throw Clinton off, however.

"They are on their way out," Clinton said of the Bush administration members. "We will not tolerate one more year of the kind of incompetent, insensitive, indifferent leadership we’ve had for the last seven years," she said.

Clinton pledged that, if elected president, she’ll begin withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq within the first 60 days of her administration. Any faster, she said, would be irresponsible and would endanger both the troops and our Iraqi allies. "We have to plan," she said.

The senator opened the floor to a question-and-answer period that lasted about 20 minutes. During this portion of her visit, Clinton touched on issues including: election reform; immigration; the conflict in the Middle East; Social Security; and Social Security. By 9:30, after thanking the crowd for attending, Clinton had left the building.

Click here to see a portion of Clinton’s address.

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