U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts Democrat running for president, is bringing the campaign trail to Aiken.
According to her campaign, Warren will host a town hall-style event at the USC Aiken Business and Education Building on Saturday, Aug. 17. Officials from both sides of the Savannah River – South Carolina and Georgia – are expected to attend.
Doors will open at 4:45 p.m. The event will start an hour later, her campaign said.
Warren will discuss a handful of policies and pitches she has already rolled out, particularly her plan for increased broadband access. A question-and-answer session is also expected.
As of September 2018, nearly 12,000 Aiken County residents lacked access to even the most basic internet service, according to a study prepared by the Center for Applied Innovation and Advanced Analytics, a facility at the University of South Carolina in Columbia.
"I will make sure every home in America has a fiber broadband connection at a price families can afford," Warren wrote in an Aug. 7 Medium post.
Broadband access is weak, or even nonexistent, in the more rural areas of Aiken County. Access, upward of 100 mbps for downloads, is concentrated in and around Aiken, North Augusta and Augusta.
Warren's visit next week is the first 2020 presidential splash in the city. While South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, both Democrats seeking the presidency, have rallied in North Augusta and Augusta, no candidate has yet come to Aiken.
"Our grassroots movement in South Carolina is growing every day," Warren said in a statement to the Aiken Standard. "I'm so glad to be heading back to the Palmetto State to listen and engage with South Carolinians about how we can make big, structural change in our country."
Warren is a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, a panel of heightened interest in the CSRA because of the Savannah River Site and the Fort Gordon cyber installation.
Tickets for the event can be found here.