Bernie Sanders visited a county Trump won by nearly 50 points. By the time he left, the room applauded at the idea of universal healthcare.
Sanders (I-VT), who, despite his progressive leanings frequently visits areas ordinarily seen as hostile to his beliefs, recently made a trip to a conservative area in West Virginia to speak about President Donald Trump and the dangers he poses to their livelihoods. The results? Sanders immediately won the people over.
Sanders made a visit to McDowell County, West Virginia, considered to be one of the poorest counties in the nation. It was also a county that Trump won in his presidential election campaign against Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. According to the New York Times, Trump defeated Clinton by a 74-23 margin in McDowell County.
The Vermont senator demonstrated to those gathered that the economic proposals that Trump and Republicans were touting were a con job. On TrumpCare specifically, Sanders appealed to the people’s better judgments and explained in plain terms why the plan was a disastrous one for their community.
“At a time when we have a massive level of income and wealth inequality, where the rich are getting much richer while the middle-class shrinks, this legislation would provide, over a ten-year period, $275 billion in tax breaks to the top 2 percent,” Sanders explained.
On healthcare itself, Sanders touted his beliefs that “we should join other countries, and guarantee healthcare” to every American. And his argument was convincing — even an ardent Trump supporter backed Sanders’s ideals.
It’s a sentiment that most Americans agree with. According to a recent Pew Research Poll, 60 percent of Americans believe that the government has a responsibility to ensure healthcare coverage for every U.S. citizen.
Chris Walker has been writing about political issues for the past decade, including for sites such as Elite Daily, AMERICAblog, and Mic. You can follow him on Twitter @thatchriswalker.