WATERLOO — Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren brought her campaign Sunday to a minority working class neighborhood anxious for the economic opportunity she promotes.
“I don’t want a government that works for a bunch of corporations,” said the U.S. senator from Massachusetts, one of 23 candidates seeking the Democratic nomination. “I want one that works for our families.
Roughly 250 people packed into the back yard at Bridget Saffold’s home just north of Sullivan Park to see Warren, whose poll numbers have been rising in Iowa but still trail former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders.
“It is just not a common thing for one of our candidates to come down to our neighborhood, come to our homes and speak to all of us, the common everyday individuals,” Saffold said.
Warren has been winning supporter behind detailed proposals she’s released to deal with issues ranging from home ownership to crackdowns on lobbying and a wealth tax on those with more than $50 million in assets.
“I’ve got a plan for that,” the former teacher-turned-attorney said often during her 40-minute speech.
Warren’s wealth tax would help provide free college education, universal daycare and universal pre-school while eliminated student debt for 95 percent of those still owing money for their education, she said. The plan levies a 2 percent tax on individuals with assets exceeding $50 million.
“I’m tired of freeloading billionaires,” she said. “I just want them to pay their fair share.”
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Warren also touted a plan to help build 3.2 million new housing units across the county for the middle class and working poor, giving special assistance to neighborhoods once “redlined” from receiving mortgages before the practice was outlawed.
The senator also reiterated her support to maintain maintain the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision. Warren has previously called for scrapping the Hyde Amendment, which bans federal funding for abortions except in cases of rape, incest or a threat to the mother’s life.
“You can outlaw abortions, but it’s not going to stop them,” Warren said. “Rich women are going to have plenty of access to safe abortions.
“It’s going to be poor women, it’s going to be young women, it’s going to be African-American women, it’s going to be women who have been raped,” she added. “Those are the ones who are going to have a hard time finding access to the basic healthcare services they need.”
The Rev. Ed Loggins III, one of many attending the event who stood in line to have their photo taken with Warren, said he was impressed by what he heard.
“She has some solid plans that are workable, and that’s what’s important,” Loggins said. “As far as I’m concerned she’s somebody that I think can bring the United States back to where it was.
“Right now we’re in serious trouble,” he added. “We need a change, and she’s that change.”