Obama, in new role, offers familiar message during rally in Philly

The former president brought his "Get out the Vote" message to Philadelphia.

Pat Loeb
September 21, 2018 - 8:24 pm
Obama in Philly

Pat Loeb | KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- Former President Barack Obama brought his "Get out the Vote" message to Philadelphia on Friday with a rally on behalf of a dozen Democrats running for offices from governor to state legislature. 

Obama hoped to reach an audience beyond the enthusiastic crowd at the Dell Music Center.

"I was missing Philly," he said, "I hadn't been here for a while."

Philadelphia has always been a friendly place for the former president, and even he acknowledged he was preaching to the choir, but his two-fold goal was to make sure they vote in this mid-term election.

"Because it's a non-presidential election, there is a tendency for casual voters to sit out," Obama told the crowd..."This time it really is different. This time the stakes really are higher."

And that they spread the message.

"You've got to convince people, even folks who aren't Democrats, on every issue, you've got to convince them," Obama said. "This election is too important. You've got to think about things."

Obama never said the name Trump, but referenced policies such as family separation and impacts such as large deficits, arguing even conservatives oppose such things. 

"There are conservatives who think it's not responsible to run up trillion dollar deficits for our children," the former president said..."People of both parties should be concerned about the current course of this country."

At the end of his half-hour speech, he returned to another familiar message: Hope.

"I'm actually hopeful right now," Obama said, "because out of this political darkness I see a great awakening."