President Barack Obama gave speeches today in Cleveland, Ohio and Fairfax, Virginia. His complete remarks at George Mason University in Fairfax can be found at this link. Here's a snippet:
So, one month. (Applause.) Just one month from tomorrow, Virginia, you’re going to step into a voting booth, and you are going to have a very big choice to make. I know folks in this crowd may have already made some decisions, but -- (applause) -- but for the undecideds that are here -- (laughter) -- as well as those who are watching today, I've said this before, this is a choice not just between two candidates or two parties, but a choice between two fundamentally different visions for America.
And today I believe that as a nation, we are moving forward again. We're moving forward. (Applause.) Now, after losing about 800,000 jobs a month when I took office, our businesses have now added 5.2 million new jobs over the past two and a half years. (Applause.) This morning, we found out that the unemployment rate has fallen to its lowest level since I took office. (Applause.) More Americans entered the workforce. More people are getting jobs.
Now, every month reminds us that we’ve still got too many of our friends and neighbors who are looking for work. And there are too many middle-class families that are still struggling to pay the bills -- they were struggling long before the crisis hit. But today’s news certainly is not an excuse to try to talk down the economy to score a few political points. It’s a reminder that this country has come too far to turn back now. (Applause.)
Because of your strength and resilience, the strength and resilience of the American people, we have made too much progress to return to the policies that led to the crisis in the first place. I can’t allow that to happen. I won’t allow that to happen. And that is why I’m running for a second term as President of the United States. (Applause.)
I have seen too much pain, seen too much struggle, to let this country get hit with another round of top-down economics. One of the main reasons we had this crisis is because big banks on Wall Street were allowed to make big bets with other people’s money on the line -- and now Governor Romney wants to roll back the rules we put in place to stop that behavior? That’s not going to happen. That is not going to happen. (Applause.)
In the picture above, from TheObamaDiary.com and OFA Virginia, you see some of the people who started gathering at 9:00 pm on October 4 for today's speech. Below is a video of the President's speech at George Mason:
The President next flew to Ohio and spoke to the folks at Cleveland State University. Here's a link to the complete speech. Below, you'll find a Sesame Street-inspired snippet from that speech as well as some video. But first, this is what Big Bird was doing today, existentially:
Now, before I begin, Ohio, I just have one question: Are you registered to vote? (Applause.) Because if you’re not, if you are not, you’ve got four days left. If you are, you can vote right now. Just go to Vote.BarackObama.com -- that's Vote.BarackObama.com -- to find out how to register and where to vote. Because, Ohio, you’ve got a big choice to make. Not just a choice between two candidates or two parties -- we've got a choice between two fundamentally different visions for America.
Now, my opponent, he was doing a lot of -- a little tap dance at the debate the other night, trying to wiggle out of stuff he’s been saying for a year; doing, like, a -- it was like “Dancing with the Stars.” (Laughter.) Or maybe it was “Extreme Makeover” -- (laughter) -- debate edition. But no matter what he says, my opponent, he’s a big believer of these top-down economics. He thinks that if we spend another $5 trillion on tax cuts that favor the wealthiest, we get rid of more regulations on Wall Street, all of our problems are going to be solved. Jobs and prosperity will rain down from the sky. (Laughter.) Deficits will magically disappear. We’ll live happily ever after.
When he was asked how he’d actually cut spending and reduce the deficit, he said he’d go after funding for public television.
AUDIENCE: Booo --
THE PRESIDENT: So for all you moms and kids out there, don’t worry, somebody is finally getting tough on Big Bird. (Laughter.) Elmo, you better make a run for it. (Laughter.) Governor Romney is going to let Wall Street run wild again, but he’s going to bring the hammer down on “Sesame Street.”
AUDIENCE: Booo --
THE PRESIDENT: You want me to save Big Bird? (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: Save Big Bird! Save Big Bird! Save Big Bird!
THE PRESIDENT: (Laughter.) Look, Cleveland, we cannot afford to double down on the same, old, top-down economic policies that caused this mess in the first place. We can't afford another round of tax cuts for wealthy folks, we’ve got to give and maintain tax cuts for you.
Here' a video snippet of Ohioans standing in the rain to listen to the President, as he talks about early voting, about 5.2 million new jobs, the new jobs numbers, "Don't boo, vote," Romney doing a "tapdance" at the debate like he was on "Dancing with the Stars" or "Extreme Makeover: Debate Edition." (Apologies that the first minute of the video is hard to hear):
Besides two major political speeches today, the President signed seventeen (17) bills into law, ranging from a law that now protects and conserves billfish to a law that disburses Federal Claims Court funds to the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, to a new law entitled, "Hazardous Waste Electronic Manifest Establishment Act," which directs the Environmental Protection Agency to establish an electronic hazardous waste manifest tracking system. (The government is moving from a forest of paper to electronic tracking, saving time and trees.). Additonally, the White House issued a proclamation to emphasize Fire Prevention Week and the dangers of home fires and wildfires.
Link to Transcripts and Documents.
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