FRANCE 24’s Jessica Le Masurier reports from the northeastern state of New Hampshire, where Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are widely expected to trounce mainstream candidates from their respective parties in Tuesday’s primary.
Trump and Sanders have emerged as clear frontrunners in the first 2016 presidential primary, held after last week’s Iowa caucuses, which saw Ted Cruz pull off a surprise win in the Republican camp while Hillary Clinton narrowly beat Sanders among Democratic voters.
In fiercely independent New Hampshire, Trump’s and Sanders’s anti-establishment rhetoric appears to have struck a chord with voters, both of them channelling anger from disillusioned voters.
But the similarities between the billionaire tycoon and the veteran leftist stop there.
Senator Sanders, 74 , is a self-proclaimed socialist who wants to tackle income inequality and provide free healthcare and education for all.
His promise to start a political revolution has made him hugely popular – presenting an unexpectedly stern challenge for Clinton.
“He is inspired. You don’t often get the chance to support a politician that is much older than you!” said 68-year-old Hilary Keating, a staunch Sanders backer.
“We have to do better to make sure that those who are hurting get a fair share of America’s wealth and economy,” added her husband Bob. “He has said that repeatedly throughout his career.”
At the other end of the political spectrum, Trump, 69, has tapped into voter anxiety about immigration.
“You’ve got all these people just coming in, sneaking in, it’s crazy, it reminds me of ants on a wall,” says Shelly Vanier, a supporter of the real estate mogul.
Others were impressed by Trump’s personal success and wealth, suggesting he was the best candidate to revive the American Dream.
As one fan put it, “He is a billionaire. (…) He is self-funded and he stands for making America great again!”
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Date created : 2016-02-09