LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Former President Bill Clinton visited Koreatown Wednesday to stump on behalf of his wife’s presidential campaign, telling the crowdHillary Clinton is a friend to the Asian-American and Pacific Islander communities who will work to improve international relations, not build walls.
“If you want to get America on the move again, you better elect Hillary for president,” Clinton said, drawing cheers from the partisan crowd at the Garden Suite Hotel.
Clinton told the crowd stories about his relationship with the AAPI community during his presidency and beyond, citing his foundation’s work following the tsunami in Japan and on climate change in Borneo and Indonesia.
“I have a wonderful unforgettable picture of all the people from the region who worked in the White House,” he said, adding that Hillary Clinton’s first overseas trip as secretary of state was to Asia.
“She worked hard to get rid of the visa backlog that disproportionately affected many people whose relatives are in this room, and she has worked hard for immigration reform and to promote and protect President Obama’s DACA and DAPA programs so that we don’t break up families, we make citizens in the future,” he said.
The former president discussed the December mass shooting in San Bernardino, noting that the shooters became radicalized over the Internet and social media.
“I know there are some people who say we need to build a fence across the Rio Grande river,” Clinton said, taking aim at presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. “But you think about San Bernardino.
You could build a wall across the border with Canada. We could erect vast seawalls along the Pacific and the Atlantic Coast. The next president could send the Navy to the Gulf Coast area to block all entry. We could send every plane the Air Force has up in the air every day to stop anybody from coming in. You still can’t keep the social media out.
“… We cannot kill our way out of the current international crisis. We have to make more friends.”
He wrapped up his speech urging the crowd to support Hillary Clinton so she can continue his work of building bridges with the Asian community.
“This is important for her, as well as for me, for our lifetime of work, for me to be here today and to look at your faces and to know that you have her back and you’re going to support her. We need you,” he said.
Clinton attended campaign rally earlier in the day in San Diego. He is also scheduled to deliver the commencement address at Loyola Marymount University on Saturday.
Hillary Clinton is scheduled to visit the Southland on Thursday, when she will campaign at East Los Angeles College.
The doors to the college’s men’s gym will open at 3 p.m. Thursday, with the event set to start at 4:45 p.m.
The trip will be the 68-year-old Clinton’s 11th to the Los Angeles area since declaring her candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination on April 12, 2015.
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