Bernie Sanders will be speaking at the Laurie Auditorium at Trinity University on Friday.
Sen. Bernie Sanders will speak Friday at Laurie Auditorium on Trinity University's campus. Credit: Courtesy / Friends of Bernie Sanders

Former Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont will speak Friday at Trinity University about advancing progressive change as part of a series of stops across Texas.

The Trinity Progressives, a student group organized to promote progressive ideals, are co-sponsoring the event with Our Revolution, a nationwide group formed in the wake of Sanders’ presidential run to continue pursuing his progressive agenda. Sanders will be joined by Nina Turner, a former Ohio state senator who is president of Our Revolution, and Jim Hightower, former Texas agriculture commissioner.

“They will talk about Our Revolution’s work in three main fields: income inequality, social justice, and Medicare for all,” stated Maddie Kennedy, co-president of the Trinity Progressives. “All three speakers are touching on the power of civic engagement and grassroots effort in creating progressive change.”

Sanders, an independent serving his second Senate term, led a insurgent campaign against Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primary. He ran on a platform of democratic socialism that sought several progressive initiatives such as universal health care, campaign finance reform, and free college tuition at public universities.

He has continued to push for his agenda as more Democrats have embraced it following Clinton’s loss to Donald Trump. In late January, Sanders led an online town-hall meeting on single-payer health care that was livestreamed to an estimated 1 million.

The event begins at 7:30 p.m. at Laurie Auditorium, and the university will provide a livestream of the sold-out event. Sanders and Turner will also appear at an Our Revolution fundraiser before the speech.

Our Revolution has endorsed several candidates running in Texas’ statewide and federal Democratic primaries. Among its listed candidates is Steven Kling, running to represent District 25 in the Texas Senate; Rick Treviño, one of five Democratic candidates running in the primary to represent Texas’ 23rd Congressional District; Derrick Crowe, a primary candidate for Texas’ 21st Congressional District; and Laura Moser, running in Texas’ 7th Congressional District.

Trinity also will host an evening with Margaret Atwood on Thursday at 7 p.m. in Laurie Auditorium. The Canadian novelist, poet, and essayist is best known for The Handmaid’s Tale and the Booker Prize-winning The Blind Assassin. She will lead a public reading and participate in a conversation with Trinity English professor Coleen Grissom as part of Gemini Ink’s Autograph Series. A livestream of that event may be found here.

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Jeffrey Sullivan

Jeffrey Sullivan is a Rivard Report reporter. He graduated from Trinity University with a degree in Political Science.