Clinton campaigns in Tampa for Obama listen09/09/08 Seán Kinane
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Yesterday afternoon at the All Peoples Life Center in East Tampa, former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton heaped praises upon former rival Barack Obama, their party’s nominee for president.
About a thousand supporters chanted and cheered as Clinton took the stage. The New York senator was hoping to direct their enthusiasm toward the campaign of Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama.
Clinton emphasized the differences between Obama and his main rival, Republican presidential nominee John McCain, on a range of issues, including the country’s economy. “You know people are feeling invisible. … People are working harder and not being rewarded for their work.”
Clinton said if Obama is elected, he will help the economy by cutting taxes on all but the wealthiest workers. “He has proposed a middle-class tax cut … that will cover 95 percent of America’s people.”
Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, was one of the people who spoke before Clinton took the stage. Joyner contrasted the tax plans of Obama and McCain. “What’s the opponetnts plan? Well, he'll keep cutting taxes for the richest Amercans and leave the middle class out. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for a change.”
Former Tampa Mayor Sandy Freedman was a supporter of Clinton’s candidacy, but recently announced that she would support Obama. Freedman told the audience “Not one among us doesn’t know that we desperately need change in this country. Bush, Cheney, McCain – they’ve got to go.” She said that an Obama presidency would “make healthcare affordable and accessible for all.”
Despite her 2002 vote giving President George W. Bush the authority to invade Iraq and her multiple votes to fund the U.S. military occupation of Iraq, Clinton called for armed services personnel stationed overseas to be redeployed to the United States. “You know that we are breaking the military and it is time for us to bring our troops home.”
During a brief press conference after the rally, the former First Lady said if he is elected president, Obama will repair the country’s “broken immigration system.” “Well, it’s important for the country. … I’m not sure there’s a lot of difference between the candidates on that particular issue.”
Clinton was repeatedly asked about Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin by the media but she declined to comment. Instead Clinton emphasized the differences between the Republican and Democratic tickets. “John McCain and Sarah Palin offer four more years of the failed policies of the last eight years.”
Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Democrat Alex Sink attended the rally but did not speak. “I’m supporting Senator Obama and Senator [Joe] Biden in their ticket and so is Senator Clinton.”
Photo by Seán Kinane/WMNF