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Bill Clinton in Buffalo: 'We need every single vote'

Making his second visit to the Buffalo area in two weeks, former President Bill Clinton came to town on the eve of the New York State primary to drum up energy and support for his presidential candidate spouse.

Bill Clinton, husband of Democratic front-runner and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has made several stops Monday before heading to Rochester in the afternoon.

He first greeted a crowd gathered at a get-out-the-vote phone bank event at Hillary for New York's Buffalo headquarters at Erie County Democratic Headquarters on Seneca Street. Then came a stop at St. John Towers in Buffalo followed by visits to Spot Coffee downtown, Alton's restaurant in Cheektowaga and across the street from the restaurant where striking Verizon workers were demonstrating.

Hillary Clinton, who also served as a senator from New York, faces Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in Tuesday's state primary.

Here's a recap of Bill Clinton's visit.


About 12:25 p.m

Clinton arrives at Alton's restaurant in Cheektowaga.

Former President Bill Clinton speaks Monday afternoon with striking Verizon workers in Cheektowaga. (John Hickey/Buffalo News)

Former President Bill Clinton speaks Monday afternoon with striking Verizon workers in Cheektowaga. (John Hickey/Buffalo News)


11 a.m.

Bill Clinton's next stop after the campaign headquarters was St. John Towers at Michigan Avenue and Virginia Street, a visit that included speaking with residents playing bingo.

"Tomorrow, the big prize is who New York will nominate for president of the United States," Clinton told those gathered at St. John Towers.


10:30 a.m.

Speaking to an enthusiastic group of volunteers and supporters at the phone bank, the former president told the crowd his wife has a plan for creating jobs. He asked those on hand to "think of what she could do for you in America if she was president of the United States."

"We want to measure our success in whether you're better off and whether our children have a brighter future," Clinton said during about five minutes of remarks.

Saying Tuesday's primary will come down to turnout and stressing "we need every single vote," Clinton said he believes results in New York will shape the rest of the primary race.

"She is the best change maker in this race," he said of Hillary Clinton. "...When it's all said and done the only thing that matters is are we better off than when we started," he said.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, who joined the former president at the first in a series of local visits, also urged supporters to head out to the voting booth on Tuesday.

"Hillary Clinton delivered for New York. New York is going to deliver for Hillary Clinton," Cuomo told the crowd.

When Clinton and Cuomo arrived at about 10:10 a.m., they greeted supporters outside the event.

"The president and the governor wanted to come in, talk to regular people, thank our volunteers and just kind of move around the community to spread Hillary's message of inclusiveness and have a last-minute ask for support," Erie County Democratic Chairman Jeremy J. Zellner said prior to Clinton and Cuomo's arrival. "I think they're going to be stopping at several different locations throughout our community today and this is their first kick-off stop for them here at our headquarters and we couldn't be more excited."

Local elected officials in attendance at Clinton's stops included Rep. Brian Higgins, Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown, Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, Assemblyman Sean Ryan, Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes and State Sen. Tim Kennedy.

Former President Bill Clinton greeted Hillary Clinton supporters and volunteers at a phone bank at Erie County Democratic Headquarters on Monday morning. (Tiffany Lankes/Buffalo News)

Former President Bill Clinton greeted Hillary Clinton supporters and volunteers at a phone bank at Erie County Democratic Headquarters on Monday morning. (Tiffany Lankes/Buffalo News)

The Democratic candidates themselves will be in the New York City area on Monday. Hillary Clinton has a rally in Manhattan and is scheduled to appear on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. Sanders has a get-out-the-vote rally scheduled in Long Island.

In terms of the Republican candidates, Donald Trump will hold a rally at First Niagara Center on Monday night. Ohio Gov. John Kasich has town hall meetings Monday in Syracuse and Schenectady, while Cruz has a rally Monday afternoon in Towson, Md.

Western New York has been a hotbed of political activity leading up the state's primary. Bill Clinton came to Depew on April 5. Hillary Clinton herself visited Buffalo April 8. Sanders held a rally at the University at Buffalo last Monday. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz came to Western New York on Thursday.

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