Speaking to a crowd of 37,500 at USC Friday afternoon, President Obama had a clear message for students: Democrats are working for you – and we’re just getting started. Joined by Barbara Boxer, Jerry Brown, and other California politicians, the President reiterated his fellow Democrats’ assertion that young people will be the deciding factor in the November 2nd election. If every young voter who turned out in 2008 votes this time around, the speakers pressed, Democrats will win.
The crowd, adorned in bejeweled “Yes We Can” shirts and waving “Moving America Forward” signs, responded enthusiastically to the President’s call for their participation. In addition to voting, a representative from Organizing for America encouraged supporters to call voters, knock on doors, and make sure their friends and family get to the polls. Jamie Foxx, emceeing the event, energized the crowd to get out the vote with a number of chants including, “We’re not exhausted!”
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Photos by Kayla Benker
Immersed in the positive energy displayed by the thousands who arrived as early as 5:30 a.m. to hear the President speak, the media-hyped “enthusiasm gap” is nonexistent. And while rally attendees are not a representative population of probable voters, a recent LA Times/USC survey found that the gap is narrowing among Californians. However, cheering for the President at a DNC-organized rally is far different from knocking on doors, driving voters to the polls, and marking your own ballot on Election Day. With just over a week to go, Democrats need to continue to put all of their energy into get out the vote efforts nationwide. Quoting the USC fight song, President Obama exclaimed: “Fight On!”