Great enthusiasm filled the David Garcia for Governor Rally in the main gathering room at the Arizona State University Student Pavilion on October 23, 2018 as approximately 700 people heard speaker after speaker (including Dr. Garcia and Senator and 2016 Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders) electrified the crowd and passionately called for everyone to vote for progressive Dr. Garcia and other Democrats and get family, friends, and co-workers to the polls as well.
Recounting the issues facing our country and the potential progressive solutions including the need to bring us together, making health care an indisputable right, fully funding all levels of education, growing the economy with a green energy component, and protecting the civil rights of everyone, speaker after speaker (including ASU Young Democrat leader Jesse Avalos, 2014 Teacher of the Year Beth Hutchins Maloney, the Garcia Field Director, Representative Ruben Gallego, former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner, Civil Rights Advocate Delores Huerta, and Sanders) enthusiastically called on the audience to spread the word about the Gubernatorial candidacy of David Garcia and how he would fight for the issues important to the people. Senator Turner, a leader in Senator Sanders organization Our Revolution was especially effective talking of a time of “transcendence” invoking the names of Nelson Mandela and Harriet Tubman to illustrate how their experiences should be applied to the present in changing the current course of the country.
A campaign infomercial served as the introduction for Dr. Garcia who told the audience how his life experiences in the military, in education, and politics had prepared him to be Governor. Saying that he “is here today thanks to a great public education,” Dr. Garcia chastised the Governorship of Doug Ducey and his reelection campaign, especially their assertions that he would be weak on the border commenting that “I served in the military while Governor Ducey served ice cream” and reassuring the audience that earlier had chanted his name a phrase he learned in the military “I have your back” finishing with the proclamation that “defending our borders should not be a political issue.”
On education, Dr. Garcia commented, “75,000 teachers had to march to Governor Ducey’s front door for him to listen” to their needs and concerns. Garcia vowed to be the most committed Arizona Governor to public education including the college and university system, which he vowed to make as free as possible according to the State Constitution.
Condemning the pay for play dark money system of special rich interests in Arizona Politics where CEO’s in the state have received a 47 percent raise over the last four years (compared to four percent for everyone else), Garcia said “ I’m an everyday guy looking to make a difference in this state” and “we need a working class governor …..who is going to look out for you.” He pledged to have an inclusive and diverse staff reflective of the state’s demographics. Furthermore, he vowed to make life better for all Arizonans by working to make “health care a right,” “double down on solar” investments, “create the economy of the future,” and “restore integrity in our leadership.”
After Dr. Garcia concluded his remarks, Senator Sanders appeared to the welcoming chorus of “Bernie” in the audience. Commenting that this “nation has more inequality than any other country on Earth,” he spent his time highlighting the lies and faults of the Trump Administration, articulating a progressive vision for America and calling on the audience to help elect David Garcia and all other Democrats and turn out at greater levels than the midterms of 2014, challenging everyone “to get to the highest voter turnout” possible.
At the end of the rally, Dr. Garcia, Representative Gallego and Senator Sanders held their hands up together in unity.
When interviewing Dr. Garcia shortly after the primaries, he relayed that the key to victory is “turnout, turnout, turnout.” That theme was very apparent at the ASU rally. If residents want a better Arizona where, as Dr. Garcia said “no one would be left behind” and there would be hope for the 25 percent of the children that live in poverty, then they need to turn out and vote. It will not happen unless the people exercise their constitutionally given right. The people need to act if they want to change the state and move it forward.