Presidential candidate Marianne Williamson stops in Claremont

  • Marianne Williamson, a self-help author and candidate in the Democratic Presidential Primary, listens to Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor Tom Howard during a discussion on the opioid crisis at Headrest in Lebanon, N.H., Wednesday, April 17, 2019. Former U.S. Rep. Paul Hodes, D-N.H., Williamson's senior campaign advisor, is at left. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to

Valley News Correspondent
Published: 10/7/2019 9:37:45 PM

CLAREMONT — Presidential candidate Marianne Williamson delivered a message at the community center on Monday that called for a major shakeup in the government institutions that she believes cater to a select few, mostly wealthy, while leaving other Americans behind.

With about 40 people in attendance, most of whom applauded frequently in support of Williamson’s proposals, the Democratic candidate said the power today rests with institutions and entities outside the reach of most people.

She said only a “few people win” with health care, education and material needs.

“At what point are we going to stand up like our Founding Fathers did and say that stops now?” Williamson said.

She charged the government works for the short-term profits of corporations, not the health and well-being of citizens.

“We are an aristocracy. That is what we repudiated in 1776 and it is time to repudiate it again.”

Williamson spoke for more than an hour on a range of topics, urging people to get more involved in our Democracy while also highlighting some of her progressive ideas including free health care, free public colleges and forgiveness of student loan debt.

“Cancel the whole damn thing,” Williamson said about student loan debt, adding that it could easily be paid for by the 2017 tax cut that put most of the money into the pockets of corporations and the wealthy.

Williamson’s passion impressed David Zucker, 70, an artist and consultant from Langdon, N.H.

Zucker called Williamson one of the most interesting candidates among the large field of Democrats, and he was disappointed she did not make the cut for the next debate.

“She has radical, new ideas for our country,” said Zucker after the appearance. “I was really impressed by what she said and the passion in which she delivered it.”

Williamson reminded the audience that many of the great, sweeping changes that helped millions of people, such as the end of slavery, were the result of movements not by governments but by citizens who rose up and demanded change.

“The U.S. government did not wake up and say ‘let’s end segregation,’ ” she said about the Civil Rights movement.

Situations won’t be fixed by people who created the situation, Williamson said referring to government.

“All the status quo does is perpetuate the status quo. We have to do something different,” she said.

She used a question on gun violence to say she would propose public funding of campaigns and that would take the power away from the gun lobby that opposes universal background checks, the licensing of guns and outlawing military assault rifles, all of which Williamson supports.

The candidate told her audience that while she supports the military and believes in national security, the $760 billion given to the Department of Defense is far out of balance with the much smaller amounts for the state department or aid programs that would help better build peace in the world by improving economic opportunities for women and children.

Williamson also said she wasn’t discouraged by her low ratings in national polls and suggested, in response to a question from the audience, that the Democratic National Committee has already decided the nominee must be one of five people running well in the polls.

“As long as you donate and people show up and have conversations that matter, I am running for president,” Williamson said.

Patrick O’Grady can be reached at

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