Dozens of supporters at Hillary Clinton’s Pontiac campaign office came to see Sen. Gary Peters and U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence on Monday — but they didn’t know a third prominent Democrat was swinging by.
After Peters hinted “we might have a special guest coming,” former President Bill Clinton came up the steps at the Saginaw Street office to loud cheers. Before arriving in Pontiac, Clinton had been stumping for his wife’s campaign at the University of Michigan-Flint.
Clinton spoke on the economy, the Affordable Care Act, bipartisan support his wife has received, and of course Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.
The former president’s swing through Michigan is further evidence that the state is a campaign priority, with both parties' nominees making multiple visits in recent months.
The 70-year-old Clinton, who was dressed in a gray suit, said the country is experiencing its 79th month of job growth: “It’s the longest stretch without any job loss month in our history since we’ve been keeping statistics.”
The economy needs further improvement, however, Clinton said, with “higher income, more upward mobility, and less inequality,” and he argued that his wife’s plan for infrastructure improvements, a manufacturing revival, and small business lending will close the gap.
“That will do the trick if we also do what we need to do in making college free for everybody with an income of $125,000 or less,” he said to applause and cheers.
Clinton said he spoke with a longtime friend in Flint on Monday who summarized the election in a single sentence.
“Tell people if you don’t want someone to drive the truck off the cliff, do not give them the keys,” he said.
After he spoke, Clinton left the building and briefly walked down Saginaw Street in front of the Crofoot Ballroom to shake hands and chat with bystanders.
Peters told MT that Clinton’s appearance reflects the importance of Pontiac, Oakland County, and Michigan to the outcome of the election.
“It’ll help turn out Democrats, which is going to be necessary for us to win,” Peters said.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.