|Photo courtesy HFA|
In a rousing speech before a capacity crowd at the University of Central Florida, President Barack Obama late Friday called on Florida voters — especially young millennials — to carry on his legacy by electing Hillary Clinton president and Patrick Murphy senator.
"Young people, let me say this," Obama told the crowd of about 9,000 at CFE Arena. "You have the chance right now to reject mean-spirited politics that takes us back ... You have the chance to shape history. Don't let that chance slip away."
Obama's message was tailored to a largely young crowd that likely included many voters who supported Hillary Clinton's Democratic primary opponent, Bernie Sanders.
One warm-up speaker, state House candidate Carlos Guillermo Smith, admitted that "earlier this year I was 'feeling the Bern.'" But he said he was voting for Clinton immediately after the rally at the nearest early-voting location — one literally name-checked by Obama later.
"Here in Florida, you can vote early," Obama said. "You can vote right now ... The nearest voting location for Orange County is right down the road at the Alafaya Library. In Seminole County, the nearest voting location is the Oviedo Aquatic Center."
Obama cited an improved economy, lower unemployment, gay marriage and increased access to health care as his accomplishments and warned that they were all at stake in the election.The president also went after Rubio again, which never gets old:
"In almost every measure, we are significantly better [off] than we were eight years ago," he said. But, he added, "All the progress made over the last eight years goes out the window if we don't win this election."
The president also gave U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, a Democratic U.S. Senate candidate in Florida, a shout-out — literally, by starting a "Patrick" chant and by attacking his opponent, Republican incumbent Marco Rubio.This rally is a seriously inspiring sight following a strange and difficult news day. An amazing speech to a huge and incredibly enthused crowd. Watch it here:
"Unlike his opponent, [Murphy] actually shows up for his job," Obama said, also criticizing Rubio for saying at a debate in Orlando that he doesn't accept that sea levels are rising.
"Now, he's from Miami," Obama said of the city where seawater is often spotted in the streets. "Apparently, what 99 percent of scientists and what your own eyes tell you is not true."
Obama said Rubio, who has been critical of Trump but still said he would vote for him, should have renounced Trump as several other Republican senators did.
"If you run for office on family values, you should've walked away months ago from someone who calls women pigs, dogs ... or rates women not on the content of their character but on a scale from one to 10," he said.