U.S. Senator and Democratic presidential contender Elizabeth Warren is on a three-day campaign swing through Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama.
Affordable housing is a chief concern for the Massachusetts progressive.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC SENATOR AND PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING: "we need a government that says, "you're rich good for you.
But pitch just a little back in the kitty so that everybody else gets a chance.
That's what this housing bill is all about." She recently re-introduced a $500 billion housing plan that she says will create millions of affordable homes and cut rental costs by ten percent.
Not just that: it aims explicitly to help close the racial wealth gap in the U.S. Her proposal would give first-time homebuyers who live in low-income, formerly segregated areas grants to use for down payments.
And that's key to Elizabeth Warren's trip through small towns in Mississippi: courting black voters, a key Democratic voting bloc.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC SENATOR AND PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE ELIZABETH WARREN, SAYING: "Here in the Delta and all around the country people need hope and it's hope that actually makes you go out there and fight." In the 2016 Democratic primary, Bernie Sanders's insurgent campaign failed to gain traction with black voters.
His efforts flamed out after the contest moved from early voting states such as Iowa and New Hampshire to the deep South.
It's a mistake Warren doesn't want to make.
Like Sanders, she's white and represents a Northeastern state.
This early visit to the south could also help recruit volunteers for Warren, who lags behind Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris in national 2020 Democratic presidential opinion polls.