Bill Clinton's Glad Tidings to Coal Miners
Prestonsburg, Kentucky – On March 12, 2016, Former President Bill Clinton came to Prestonsburg Elementary School after being in Frankfort and Owensboro to continue his campaign for his wife, Hillary Clinton. The doors opened at 6:45 p.m. for the public. At the entrance of the school were protesters waving signs that said “Trump for 2016” and red posters that had “Coal Miners Won’t Forget! Go Home Bill!” written on them. Hundreds of supporters were trying to squeeze through the door of the gym to sit on the empty seats closest to the stage. As supporters and protesters were waiting for Alison Grimes to introduce the former president at 7:45 p.m., they enjoyed listening to live music performed by “The Big Sandy Idols.” There was another band after “The Big Sandy Idols” that played bluegrass country music.
When the former President took the stage he touched bases for solutions on coal issues, job opportunities, taxes, and foreign policy. Solutions for coal counties were his main focus. His 30-minute speech was short, simple, and straight to the point. There were great glad tidings for the future of Kentuckians and their generations. “I’m not like a lot of people,” Bill Clinton started. “It doesn’t bother me to have protesters and rallies — I’m glad they come.” He pointed at one protester and thanked him for booing at him.
He reminded the audience about the investments that were done by his administrators and him. He talked about the New Markets Tax Credit that gives up to 39 percent of tax credits to people who invested in places like this. “Between 2003 and 2013, we had thousands of projects in America to create three quarters of a million jobs,” said Clinton. “Not here,” one protester in the back exclaimed. In his speech he connected with the audience by telling them that he grew up in a place like this. “Nobody when I was a kid thought they were poor if they had clean clothes, food to eat, and they can ask a stranger to come in and have lunch.” Clinton said. “The kids didn’t think so for one main reason. Everybody believed that they can make tomorrow better than today.”
He told us his memories of when he got out of law school 40-plus years ago. He mentioned two of his friends that had difficulties when they worked in the coal mines. One of his friends was 5’6″ and weighed 96 pounds, had lung disease, and couldn’t get any benefits. The other one, half his size, would work 16 hours per day in the coal mine where there was no protection just to give this country the ability to power itself and defend itself. Mr. Clinton also mentioned the potential of young Kentuckians. He saw the nanotechnologies made by 18 and 19-year-olds here in Kentucky. Millions of dollars were invested to do such projects. “I never held a million dollars in my hand,” Mr. Clinton said.
Mr. Clinton told us to remember what happened in San Bernardino, which was the last terrorist activity that happened in the U.S. “People that did that were converted over the internet,” Clinton recalls. He told us that Hillary’s position is something like this: You can build your wall across the Mexican and Canadian borders, build a sea wall across the Pacific, a sea wall in the Atlantic, you can send the entire U.S. Navy to the Gulf of New Mexico, and you still can’t set out the social media across San Bernardino.” He gave solutions to how we as Americans can win the hearts and minds of people together. “Go vote for who you want to,” said Clinton, “but don’t pretend that we can get things done by screaming at each other.”