Clinton Rally at UC Davis (10/9/12)

The Event

History repeated itself on Tuesday, October 9th, when former President Bill Clinton visited the UC Davis campus for the second time in the last five years. The first time was in 2008 when he was campaigning for his wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton, as a presidential candidate. This time was to endorse four local Democratic candidates for US Congress. As Clinton took the podium on Tuesday he declared, “I love this campus. I love it every time I come. I appreciate everything you’re trying to do here.”

The event took place on the UC Davis quad, attracting around 8,000 attendees who started congregating at 8 am–three hours before the rally was scheduled to start. The program began at 11 am with speeches from the ASUCD President, Rebecca Sterling, and President of the Davis College Democrats, Aref Aziz. Aziz welcomed everyone and said, “Today we’re here because it’s all about education…Imagine the change we can do together…This crowd can turn the tide in the election.”

Next, the candidates each said a few words. The overall message was about participation– reminding people to register to vote and to remember to vote on Election Day–and the fundamental importance of affording and receiving a college education.

The four candidates were:

Memorable quotes:

  • Hernandez: “[I want to]¬†show kids that even if you’re from the [Central] Valley, you can make something of yourself if you apply yourself.”
  • Hernandez: “It’s time for the average citizen to get involved and play in the political process.”
  • Bera: “I didn’t get here by myself. I got here because the country invested in me. That is what this election is about, investing in the next generation.”
  • McNerney: “Ideas are going to move this country forward.”
  • Garamendi: “How many of you have your smart phone? You can register to vote using your smart phone. If you leave this plaza without registering, [I will follow you to class and make sure you do.] …This is how you change the nation. You get up and vote.”

At noon, it was Clinton’s turn to speak. He shared his vision for the country, explained why people should vote for the four Democratic candidates, talked about his stance on a few propositions, and discussed the current state of higher education and the importance of a college education . His most memorable quotes:

  • On his vision for the country, “A country of ‘we’re in this together is better than a country of you’re on your own’.”
  • On his vision for the country,”A government that focuses on the future works better.”
  • On endorsing the candidates, “We don’t need lectures in self-reliance. We need a road map to a brighter future. These candidates have it. I want you to vote for them. They represent America.”
  • On getting a degree, “We need you to finish. To get out of here with your degree. To find good jobs and have a good future. This one thing could change the future of America…It’s your future, it’s your life. We have to do it together.”

The rally concluded at around 12:30 pm and both Clinton and the candidates mingled with the crowd.

Behind the Scenes with CES

Read our blog article here about some of the preparations. On the day of, CES staff ran registration, worked the crowd, and made sure the event ran smoothly. Here are some photos from behind-the-scenes:


Ellie and Theresa working registration for staff, media, and VIPs


Taken by Katrina when she was a temporary bodyguard

Katrina got up close and personal with the former president


Can you spot Ian and Nathan in the crowd? (Hint: Ian looks like Moby but in a mint green shirt.)

Helpful Links
More of our photos of the event
Video coverage from UC Davis AggieTV
Article from The California Aggie
Article from the Sacramento Bee
A Storify story about the event

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