“She is a woman who understands our children need the best education, who understands senior citizens need Social Security, who understands every American should be entitled to healthcare. Here she is, the next President of the United States, Hillary Clinton.” This was Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell’s introduction last night at Millersville University in Lancaster County where Hillary spoke to over 3,000 college students and local residents. Hillary came out with a big smile on her face and sporting a dark red suit jacket and tailored black pants, shaking hands with audience members. She thanked everyone for coming out and acknowledged the College’s basketball team was competing in the NCAA tournament at the same time, which drew cheers from the crowd. She started her speech by stating “this is one of the most important elections because it will determine the direction of this country for the rest of the 21st century.” The overall theme of the issues she addressed was “We need a President that’s more concerned about Main Street than Wall Street.” This statement appealed highly to the audience, the majority of which is middle and working class. She vowed that as President, she would give back to the communities and create new jobs. She would implement a plan to start bringing troops home within sixty days, as they have already done what they were asked to do: bring down Saddam Hussein. She would establish a healthcare tax credit, as it is morally unethical and financially unwise for 47 million Americans to live without health insurance. She would invest more money in our education programs and end No Child Left Behind because “children should not be turned into little test takers.” She won the college students when she said she would make college more affordable by increasing the tax credit and eliminate the high interest rates of student loan companies. She stated she would also provide more job training and apprenticeship programs to young people that don’t go to college. She concluded her speech, for which she got a standing ovation, by stating “we need to restore moral authority and leadership universally and we have a lot to do back home to accomplish this. We have got to put us first. We got to take control of our destiny.”
So what did Hillary’s speech mean to me? First of all, let me establish I grew up in conservative home and am a registered Republican. However, I switched party affiliations to Democratic just so I can vote for Hillary in this election. That says a lot. If Hillary is elected, she would make history; she would be the first woman and the first First lady to become President. However, that is not important; I just find it cool. It is what she said at Millersville University that mattered. I agree with her that this is an important election that will determine the direction the country will take for the rest of the century. I agree that every American needs health insurance and that college needs to be more affordable, I worry about when I graduate in May about being able to afford health insurance and if Hillary is President, I know I can be covered at a reasonable rate. Although I do not have any college debt (I’m there in scholarship so I consider myself lucky), all of my friends are. Six months after they graduate in May, their student loan companies will hit them up for their money back. They will struggle to pay it back and it may even take years for them to become debt free. No one should have to deal with this. Finally, I agree that while it was necessary to send troops to Iraq, they did all they were asked to do: bring down Saddam Hussein. They did their job; its time to not drag out this war any longer, and bring our troops home! Go Hillary!!!