Sanders headquarters opens in downtown Scranton


Photo credit/ Jessica Bonacci

Above is one of the posters that is decorating the Sanders Headquarters in Scranton.

Jessica Bonacci, Opinion Editor

The Bernie Sanders presidential campaign launched the opening of its Scranton headquarters on March 22. According to flyers at the event, the campaign called the opening a “celebration.”

According to Ryan Hughes, state director for the Sanders campaign, the office is Sanders’ first in Pennsylvania.

Hughes explained that the campaign “believe[s] that Senator Sanders’ vision for the country, especially when he talks about his lifelong support of labor unions and his fight on behalf of working families to raise the minimum wage to $15” matches the vision of Scranton.

The headquarters opened to a packed house with many attendees wearing buttons, stickers and printed shirts in support of Senator Sanders.

According to Hughes, Sanders is one of the most consistent politicians in history. Hughes said Sanders’ platform is the reason for his following and was optimistic about the event’s turnout.

“I think it’s great. This is an excellent start,” Hughes explained. “I think you have your base and we grow it out from there.”

Supporters of all ages filled the 207 N. Washington Ave. office for the celebration. Organizers treated attendees to pizza and encouraged them to mingle and meet fellow volunteers.

The event was not focused on the presidential candidate, but on his supporters and volunteers. A bulletin board in the office was left blank for supporters to write why they support Sanders on sticky notes.

Written responses included “Bernie believes in a woman’s right to choose,” “my Bible tells me so” and “workers’ rights.”

An area was also equipped with markers and papers for attendees to design posters to hang on the office’s walls.

Jack Abdalla, a student from a local high school and volunteer for the Sanders campaign, will not be old enough to vote by the Pennsylvania primaries, but plans on helping until he can vote in this year’s general election.

“I’m voting for Bernie because I believe this nation needs a true liberal,” said Abdalla. “We need to put fire into the Democratic party.”

Volunteer Dana Greenwood explained that she shares similar beliefs to Sanders.

“I believe that Bernie Sanders is the only person running at this point that is for everybody, not just one person, and he can really make a huge difference,” Greenwood said.

Marywood University Freshman and campaign volunteer Liam Healey said he is glad the campaign headquarters are in Scranton.

“I really think it’s a very nice turnout,” Healey said. “I’m excited to see a lot of people out supporting Bernie…[T]his area needs a candidate like Bernie Sanders.”

At the conclusion of the celebration, volunteers were encouraged by organizers to participate in a phonebank for Sanders.

Those interested in volunteering for the campaign can find more information on Bernie Sander’s website.

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