Bernie Sanders tells Kansas crowd: This 'sure doesn’t look' like a GOP state

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill’s 12:30 Report: Milley apologizes for church photo-op Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk Biden courts younger voters — who have been a weakness MORE (I-Vt.) rallied a Kansas crowd on Friday alongside Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the surprise victor of last month’s New York congressional primary against Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.).

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Sanders told the raucous crowd of supporters in Wichita that Kansas “doesn’t look” like a red state to him, noting the popularity of the two self-described democratic socialists in the area.

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“People told me Kansas was a Republican state. It sure doesn’t look that way,” Sanders said to cheers, according to The Associated Press.

“Whether you live in Vermont or the Bronx or Kansas, you are outraged by a situation in which three people in this country own more wealth than the bottom half of America,” he continued.

The two rallied in Wichita in support of Democrat James Thompson, who like Ocasio-Cortez worked for Sanders’s 2016 presidential campaign and is running in Kansas’s 4th District against Rep. Ron EstesRonald (Ron) Gene EstesHouse GOP lawmakers urge Senate to confirm Vought Electric Avenue: The Democrats’ crusade to rob from the poor to build electric cars for the rich Pompeo expected to visit Kansas on Thursday MORE (R).

Ocasio-Cortez, a 28-year-old political upstart who has enjoyed rising popularity in the Democratic Party after defeating Crowley in a primary by double digits, spoke of Kansas’s historic decision to enter the union as a free state rather than embracing slavery.

“That is the crucible and soul of this state,” she told the crowd. “Back then, the people of Kansas were the tipping point for the future of this nation and today they are again.”

The district leans Republican, and Estes won a special election to represent the district last year by 6 points.

Thompson must first face Laura Lombard, who ran unsuccessfully against Estes last year, in a primary in August before he can challenge Estes in November.

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