CONWAY — Fresh of a strong showing in the Iowa Democratic presidential debate on Tuesday, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders plans to bring that momentum back to the Granite State this weekend.
Sanders, 77, has four campaign stops planned, including a visit to Conway on Sunday.
He is scheduled to hold a town hall meeting at the Tuckerman Brewing Co. at 66 Hobbs St. in Conway Village at 2 p.m. on Sunday. Those wishing to attend can preregister online at tinyurl.com/s57zgs8.
Following the town hall, Sanders plans to attend an editorial board at the Sun at 3:30 p.m.
On Saturday, Sanders will attend a town hall in Exeter at 3:30 p.m., followed by a rally in Manchester at 6 p.m.
On Sunday, he is scheduled to start his day by attending the Exchange Candidate Forum with New Hampshire Public Radio in Concord at 11 a.m.
Sanders was last in the valley on Aug. 12, when he held a town hall in North Conway. An estimated 460 people crammed into the unair-conditioned North Conway Community Center to hear the Vermont senator outline his campaign themes of reform and leadership.
Other Democrats seeking the nomination are Michael Bennet, Joe Biden, Michael Bloomberg, Pete Buttigieg, John Delaney, Tulsi Gabbard, Amy Klobuchar, Deval Patrick, Tom Steyer, Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang.
During Tuesday's debate, hosting by CNN and The Des Moines Register Sanders shared the stage with Biden, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, Steyer and Warren.
New York Times’ Opinion writer Melanye Price gave Sanders a score of 9 out of 10 for his performance. “He looked like the nominee. His supporters should be ecstatic,” she wrote.
According to a 2020 Democratic presidential poll on Real Clear Politics, conducted by Economist/YouGov and released on Wednesday, Biden sits in first with 27 percent of the vote, followed by Sanders, 20 percent; Warren, 19 percent; Bloomberg, 5 percent; Klobuchar and Yang, 3 percent; Gabbard, 2 percent; and Steyer, 1 percent.
In the New Hampshire Democratic Presidential Primary Poll conducted by the Boston Herald/Franklin Pierce University, Biden led with 26 percent, followed by Sanders, 22 percent; Warren, 18; Buttigieg, 7 percent; Gabbard, 4; Klobuchar, 2 percent; Steyer, 2; and Yang, 2 percent.
When it comes to political war chests, Sanders had raised $34.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, $10 million more than his closest rival.
For many who “felt the Bern” when Sanders visited North Conway in February 2016 (he was the first politician to do so at the time), one of the loudest rounds of applause greeted this statement: “Four years ago, I came to New Hampshire, and my views on health care were criticized as a radical, extreme idea: I repeat now that health care is a right, not a privilege.”
Sanders said working-class Americans spend 25 percent of their income on health care and that last year, 500,000 Americans went bankrupt due to health-care costs.
“You shouldn’t have to worry about financial ruin to get better,” said Sanders. “The function of the current system is very simple: It is to make as much profit as you can with the insurance and drug companies in partnership with the health-care industry.”
Sanders visited the Sun on Jan. 22, 2016, and was asked where his passion for social justice stems from. He said he was born in a family without means. From age 6 or 7, he learned the importance of money by overhearing his parents arguing about finances. He said that lower-income people die sooner than those with more means because of the stress of being poor. They have to worry about the rent, putting gas in the car or lost wages when they stay home from work when their child is sick.
“I’m not going to tell you I was born in a log cabin, but I was born in a rent-controlled apartment in Brooklyn,” said Sanders.
On Monday, SEA/SEIU Local 1984, New Hampshire’s second-largest union with over 10,000 public and private sector members, endorsed Sanders for president following the recommendation of the Political Education Committee.
“For decades, Sen. Sanders has represented the interests of workers all across this country, and during these past few months, he has taken the time to support SEA/SEIU Local 1984 specifically,” said Rich Gulla, SEA/SEIU Local 1984 President since 2014. “Just recently, when he learned of the struggles that New Hampshire state employees who are without a contract are facing he called a press conference to tell Governor Sununu to treat workers with respect. We know American workers can count on him. We are proud to endorse Sen. Sanders for president.”
Sanders and Jane O’Meara Sanders, his wife, live in Burlington, Vt., where he was the mayor from 1981-1989.
For more on Sanders, go to berniesanders.com.