Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) drew thousands of attendees to the University of Houston campus Sunday evening.
Among them was Mary Sarver, a 27-year-old Houston schoolteacher. Sarver identifies herself as an independent and wants to hear from all candidates this election cycle.
“It was really interesting to be honest – there were so many people there in line to get in the door and there had to be thousands of people there, but there was a man who stands up for labor workers, and he got the crowd fired up,” Sarver explains. “He introduced Bernie, and he came out with his wife.”
Sarver was correct. The Houston Press reported roughly 5,000 people attended the event. Sarver provided a cell phone video of the people filing into the auditorium.
Sarver said Sanders jumped straight into the issues he wanted to focus on if elected president.
“He really talked about what is wrong in America in his point of view. He specifically mentioned Jeb Bush talking about the fact that people need to work more in America…He basically said that we are working more than we ever had before,” she said.
Sanders then addressed women’s’ issues.
“He was really going after the Republican Party,” Sarver said.
She recalled he said it’s “inexcusable” that women make roughly 20 cents less on a dollar than men.
Sarver said that comment got huge cheers from the crowd, as there were many women in attendance. She estimated roughly 80 percent of the audience were “under 30” but added, “there were older people there too.”
Sarver said she did notice many minorities in the audience, “a lot of Hispanic people.”
Sanders’ audience is different to that of Hillary Clinton’s, where at least at her formal launch in New York City, the majority of the crowd was white, middle-aged supporters.
Sarver said Sanders talked about the number of children in Texas going hungry and discussed poverty issues. Sarver questioned the number Sanders gave on the children statement. “That I questioned – that figure,” the schoolteacher said.
She left early, but said for the time she was there Sanders didn’t take any swings at or criticize Hillary Clinton – the Democratic frontrunner.
“It seemed to me that people were not wanting to vote traditional – they’re going for a different type of candidate,” Sarver concluded.