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Hillary Clinton Makes Her First Rochester Primary Campaign Stop At MCC

Martin Kaufman

Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton made her first Rochester stop in the New York Primary campaign Friday night. The economy was a major theme.

Both Clinton and her Democratic rival, Bernie Sanders have been focusing a lot of attention on the economy, and that's especially key in upstate New York, which has been beset by manufacturing job losses in recent years.

During her speech at Monroe Community College, Clinton talked about the efforts at that college, as well as at the University of Rochester and RIT to help train the workforce.

“How do we get jobs back in manufacturing , how do we prepare people for advanced manufacturing, how do we get back to the point where we can say yes, we can make it in America , and what’s happening at RIT is leading the way.”

Clinton did not spend a lot of time focusing on her opponent in the April 19th primary, mentioning Sanders only when she got to the topic of gun control and highlighting differences between them on that topic.

Clinton also sounded a number of themes popular among Democrats before the enthusiastic crowd of several hundred people that packed the gym at MCC. That included topics like LGBT rights, climate change and raising the minimum wage.

Her speech also hit home for students in the crowd when she talked about pushing for a debt-free education, something Bernie Sanders has also talked about. And Clinton took the opportunity to take a jab at  the Republican front-runner as well.

“You will not have to borrow a penny to be able to go to a public college or university, but as Louise said, I am not going to pay for Donald Trump’s kids or grand kids.”

The speech at MCC came about after letters were sent out by a group of students at that college to presidential hopefuls. They say Clinton was the first to accept the invitation to come speak.

A student advisor, Matthew Lawson, says Clinton's appearance has really energized those students about the presidential contest.

“I see the energy I see the passion out of these students , they’re interested in this election, they know this election will be big for them, and there’s a lot of issues that impact students.”

And Lawson says not all of the students who worked on the invitations are Clinton backers; he says the main thing is they just wanted to be part of the process.

Clinton later spoke on Friday night to a New York State United Teachers union event going on at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center.

Republican John Kasich will hold a town hall style rally in Greece on Saturday, and GOP front-runner Donald Trump will be at an aviation facility on Scottsville Road on Sunday.
Democrat Bernie Sanders will be in Buffalo and Binghamton on Monday. It's not yet known when he'll visit the Rochester area.
(Video by Jason Milton)