It’s finally here! After two years of brutal campaigning, today the world looks to the United States as we hold our elections.
I don’t know how much I’ve spent on Uber and Lyft this cycle, but it was probably a lot. This year I was able to cover different aspects of the 2016 campaign. Sometimes with other people, other times alone. But the experiences of rallies, press conferences and a debate have all been the same: sending out emails trying to justify that my blog was a legitimate media outlet, waiting to receive confirmation, recognizing the same reporters at each event, wading through the crowd to get the best shot, trying to get the best quote, running into fellow student journalists.
The following are photos that I’ve taken during this incredible cycle. Since June I’ve reported on three rallies, a congressional debate and a group of Clinton campaign volunteers in Reno.
I did not photograph the Reno trip, though there are photos from when the bus got stuck in Donner Pass on the way back.
Some were taken with my phone when I was with other people.
Regardless of the quality or event, this election isn’t about Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Ami Bera, Scott Jones, Loretta Sanchez or Kamala Harris. It was always about what we as Americans — more specifically as Californians — are.
California Attorney General and Democratic candidate for the United States Senate Kamala Harris stopped the campaign headquarters of Congressman Ami Bera (D-Elk Grove) for the Sacramento leg of her 10-day bus tour of the state.
Due to California’s top-two primary, two Democrats will be going head-to-head in the general election Nov. 8. Harris’ challenger is Democratic Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez of Anaheim. However, Harris is still the national and state party’s choice to fill the seat of retiring Senator Barbara Boxer who has occupied that seat since being elected in 1992.
According to a poll conducted by the Public Policy Institute of California, Harris leads Sanchez by 22 points as of Oct. 23. More recent polls put her at 20.
Recently Harris has gained national attention after spearheading the crackdown on backpage.com. Site executives Carl Ferrer, Michael Lacey and James Larkin were charged with pimping and pimping minors in Sacramento County Superior Court back in September. Prosecutors allege that all three men knowingly received millions in bonuses from the illegal prostitution ads on the site.
Harris said that it is important that her successor continue to pursue prosecution of backpage.com if she is elected.
Outside the North Gym, hundreds of people waited to hear Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speak at Sacramento City College Sunday, June 5 — two days before California’s June 7 presidential primary.
Clinton took the stage between 6 and 7 p.m. as Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song” (Clinton’s official song) played. She was introduced by Congresswoman Doris Matsui, who also worked in the White House during Clinton’s tenure as First Lady to former President Bill Clinton. Matsui reminisced about when her husband, Congressman Bob Matsui, died, saying that Hillary Clinton was the first to call and offer her condolences.
The former Secretary of State’s speech focused on domestic policy. She shared emotional moments with the crowd regarding her time as a senator from New York during the Sept. 11 attacks as well as her experiences running the State Department during the 2011 siege on Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan that resulted in the death of the infamous terrorist.
Focusing on connecting with the state’s voters, Clinton applauded California’s diversity calling it, “…as big as a country and as diverse as one, too.”
During her speech, Clinton applauded President Barack Obama for “digging us out of the ditch,” referring to the president’s efforts to strengthen the economy during the Great Recession.
“It is a fact that the economy does better when we have a Democrat in the White House,” said Clinton, who also indicated that the recession began during the presidency of Republican President George W. Bush.
Clinton also criticized Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, on key issues, such as his ability to be a responsible and reliable as commander in chief.
“Here’s somebody who in the last few weeks has insulted our closest allies,” said Clinton, “has praised dictators like [Kim Jong Un] in North Korea. Has advocated pulling out of NATO, which is our strongest military alliance. Has said in very cavalier [fashion] that he doesn’t really mind if other countries get nuclear weapons, including Saudi Arabia.”
Other politicians at the event also voiced their concerns regarding the business mogul’s ability.
“…All you have to look at is what’s happening in this country in the past week with this guy Trump,” said Sacramento mayoral candidate Darrell Steinberg, “calling out a judge because of his Mexican heritage and saying he can’t be impartial, applying the same logic to any Muslim judge. This is dangerous.”
Steinberg was referring to Trump’s recent comments regarding the federal judge overlooking the California lawsuit against Trump University, Gonzalo P. Curiel.
Steinberg endorsed Clinton as the next president.
“She’s eminently qualified,” said Steinberg. “She’s going to be respected around the country and around the world.”
Nancy McFadden, Gov. Jerry Brown’s chief of staff, took a lighter approach. She compared Trump to the “Harry Potter” villain Voldemort by referring to him as “He who must not be named.” She justified this by saying that Trump likes hearing his own name.
“Who puts their names on steaks?” McFadden joked to the crowd that roared with laughter.
Before Clinton addressed the standing-room-only crowd, the first to speak was former United States Ambassador to Hungary Eleni Tsakopoulos Kounalakis, a Sacramento native. Other speakers included Assemblymember Kevin McCarty, Congressman John Garamendi and Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson.
Though knowledge of Clinton’s campaign making a stop in Sacramento had been released over a week earlier, the location remained undisclosed. It wasn’t until Thursday, according to Public Information Officer Rick Brewer, that the Clinton campaign contacted City College officials about holding the event on campus.
California residents registered as either Democrats or with no party preference may vote in the Democratic primary Tuesday, June 7.