HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (CNN) – Despite the spitting rain and the chilly weather, Hillary Clinton lingered in a parking lot in Pennsylvania Monday before a campaign event to speak to a group of about two dozen truckers who had gathered to protest the effect of rising gas prices on their industry.
Clinton was set to host an afternoon economic roundtable at the Capital Diner here, but when Clinton’s campaign plane landed in Harrisburg, her campaign learned from her advance staff about the small but vocal demonstration being held at the diner.
The New York senator hustled out of her motorcade of SUVs on arriving to chat for several minutes with the truckers, who voiced concerns about fuel costs. As passing big rigs honked, some truckers told Clinton they were being blamed by retailers for the rising costs of trucking, a problem they said was owed to high gas prices.
Clinton listened intently and then spoke about the need for the next president to focus on working families and alternative energies. She also promised to combat price gouging and examine the possibility of regulating oil markets.
Two of the truck drivers, named Mark and J.B., were invited to join her economic roundtable inside the diner, where Clinton praised them for voicing their discontent.
“I want to thank Mark and J.B. because they are doing what Americans do,” Clinton said, concluding the roundtable. “When you finally get pushed to the end of the rope you have to stand up and say enough. And that’s what this election should be about.”
- CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby