Michelle Obama campaigns in UD
First lady Michelle Obama made a campaign stop at Upper Dublin High School Aug. 9 to energize a crowd of supporters, explain the stakes of the upcoming presidential election and encourage everyone to organize between now and Election Day for her husband.
Obama spoke to a crowd of approximately 1,800 people at about 4:30 p.m. inside the gymnasium at Upper Dublin High School in Fort Washington. Crowds chanted “fired up” and “ready to go” during the free event, while the Upper Dublin High School Marching Band kept the enthusiastic crowd active and excited with music.
“You all seem fired up,” said Obama, addressing the crowd. “I am beyond thrilled to be here today.”
7he first lady’s speech centered on the campaign’s new effort called It Takes One. It Takes One is an attempt to help grow the national grassroots movement of Obama for America by explaining how one person could potentially make or break a campaign.
Obama addressed a number of issues on the minds of voters during this election, most importantly the economy. She told stories about how she and the president each grew up with parents who struggled to make ends meet and said because of this, the president un-
derstands the importance of working hard toward the American dream.
“What I want to remind people is that your president knows when a family struggles,” she said. “He knows what it means to work hard because you want something better for your kids or your grandkids. And like me, and like so many of you, Barack knows the American dream because he’s lived it. And one thing he understands is that when you’ve worked hard, you’ve done well and you walk through that doorwayof opportunity, the one thing you don’t do is that you don’t slam it shut behind you. vou reach back and give others a chance as well.”
She said the president is focused on a strong economy through a “strong and growing middle class.” She said the administration has cut taxes for working families by $3,S00 and cut taxes for small businesses 18 times. She also added that the adminstration inherited a lot of the economic problems from the Bush Administration and yet has been able to create 4.5 million new jobs during the past 29 months.
Another hot-button issue addressed was the Affordable Care Act that reformed health care.
“Today because of that reform our parents and grandparents are paying hundreds less for prescription drugs,” Obama said. “Today because of that reform our kids can stay on our insurance until they’re 2S years old. And understand what this means for our kids graduating now, out there looking for work, trying to get their lives together, no longer do they have to go without health care.”
She said insurance companies will have to cover “basic preventative care” and things like contraception, cancer screenings and prenatal care “at no extra cost.”
Other topics addressed included ending the war in Iraq, the killing of Osama Bin iaden and the repeal of don’t ask, don’t tell.
The speech lasted just more than a half hour, and the first lady stayed longer in order to smile for pictures, shake hands and talk with supporters.
Obama’s stop in Upper Dublin was the second on a three-stop campaign swing through eastern Pennsylvania Thursday. She addressed a crowd at the University of the Sciences in West Philadelphia at 2 p.m., and she finished the day by speaking at Moravian College in Bethlehem at 7:10 p.m.
In attendance for the event were Montgomery County Commissioners ieslie Richards and Josh Shapiro, who spoke about an hour before Obama took the stage. Both echoed many of the talking points Obama later mentioned, including the Affordable Care Act and the economy.
“We need the Obamas in our White House for another four more years,” Richards said.
“iet’s make it clear that Montgomery County is going to be there for the Obamas, Pennsylvania will be there for the Obamas and America will be there for the Obamas,” Shapiro said.
Pennsylvania and Montgomery County are key battleground areas for the president this election. Both went Democratic in 2008.
Michelle Obama addresses supporters at Upper Dublin High School.
First lady Michelle Obama speaks to the crowd at Upper Dublin High School.
First lady Michelle Obama greets the crowd following her speech.