Bernie Sanders got huge cheers from the massive crowd at Washington Square Park.
Nearly 30,000 people piled into Washington Square Park Wednesday to show their support for Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders.
The massive rally appeared to give the 74-year-old democratic socialist’s spirits a boost.
“When I look at an unbelievable crowd like this I believe we’re going to win here in New York,” Sanders declared, standing in front of the iconic Washington Square Arch.
The Vermont Senator drew huge cheers as he railed against the “rigged economy” and called for reforms to corporate America and remedies for income inequality.
He also bragged about his humble Brooklyn roots.
“I grew up in Brooklyn,” he said. “The American dream was alive and well. My father and my mother, their dream was for my brother and I to have a better standard of living than them.
“Together we will not allow that American dream to die,” he added. “Together, we are going to create an economy that works for all of us…not just the one percent.”
Imanuel Smith, 35, a cinematographer from Brooklyn, said Sanders is the only viable candidate for president.
Nearly 30,000 people turned out for the rally to back Sanders.
“He’s the most honest politician there is right now,” he said. “The guy’s been in politics all his life. People are saying Hillary is the more experienced. C’mon, be real, (she) is not a person of the people. She says ‘change has to come slow.’ Change has to come quick.”
“People are sick of it. That’s why we want Bernie,” he added.
Sanders’ Dem rival Hillary Clinton held a more intimate rally with 1,300 supporters at a community center in the Bronx.
Bernie Sanders speaks to supporters at a campaign rally at Washington Square Park on Wednesday.
Sanders included Clinton in his criticism of Wall Street and big banks.
“You can tell a lot about a candidate and campaigns they run by how they raise the money they need to run those campaigns,” he said. “We do not represent corporate America. Secretary Clinton has chosen to raise her funds in a very different way. She has a number of Super PACs and in the last filing period it reported taking $15 million dollars from Wall Street alone.”
The rallies set the stage for Thursday night’s high stakes debate in Brooklyn and capped a day that saw both candidates campaigning around organized labor.
Both Sanders and Clinton stopped by rallies held by striking Verizon workers during the day.
Communications Workers of America honcho Christopher Shelton joined Sanders in Washington Square Park.
“I’m here to tell you a story of corporate greed and the poster child for corporate greed, a company called Verizon,” Shelton said. “They went on strike today because the poster child wants everything they earned for the past 50 years. There’s a lot of candidates who actually cause strikes but there’s only one who marches with us and that’s Bernie Sanders.”