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Former U.S. President Bill Clinton visits El Paso

Published: Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Updated: Friday, May 17, 2013 12:05

Clinton

Aaron Montes / The Prospector

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton visited El Paso April 24 at the El Paso County Coliseum to support Congressman Silvestre Reyes, D-El Paso, bid for reelection.

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton visited El Paso April 24 to support of Congressman Silvestre Reyes as he fights to get reelected as El Paso's congressional representative.

The event at the El Paso County Coliseum drew a crowd of an estimated 3,000 to 4,000 people. Clinton’s speech began at around 3:30 p.m. and lasted about half an hour.

Clinton began his speech by recounting how he first met Reyes and how years later Reyes gave him a pair of boots, which he was wearing at the event.

He also spoke about Reyes’s involvement with Fort Bliss, small business and health care along with the lack of voter turn out in the city. Clinton also dedicated a portion of his speech to the topic of higher education.

“The good news about America’s future is we’re still the best system of higher education in the world,” Clinton said. “The bad news is we’ve fallen from first to 15. People are scared to death they’re going to run up so much debt in this economy and they’ll never be able to repay that debt. But (Reyes) voted for a bill that’ll allow everybody to have a federally approve student loan.”

Clinton was referring to a bill passed in October that allowed students to cap their monthly student loan repayments at 10 percent of their income.

Clinton also spoke of voter turn out and the role El Paso voters play in the elections.

“The thing I’m worried about is that the majority of the people will support (Reyes) but that some of that majority may not show up to vote,” Clinton said. “So let me remind you that early voting starts May 14.”

At the end of Clinton’s speech, Reyes presented him with a new pair of black cowboy boots that have the years of his term written on them along with the number 42.

“Thank you, thank you for everything you did for me, thank you for everything you did for Hillary Clinton and thank you for sending Silvestre Reyes to Congress,” Clinton said. “Just do it for me one more time.”

Jasmine Aguilera may be reached at prospector@utep.edu.

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