Barack Obama made a stop on the Democratic campaign trail to encourage the people of Detroit to get out and vote on November 6 for the state’s Democratic candidates. The rally took place on Friday, October 26, at Cass Tech High School in Detroit, and as expected, brought out several thousand people who were eager to show their support.
The rally opened up with remarks from former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, current chair of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, who gave some staggering statistics about voting in the last presidential election. He said, “In 2016, the current occupant of the White House carried the state [Michigan] by just 10K votes. By any measure, Michigan leans blue, democratic. But your representatives in the state legislature and in the congress don’t match the desires of the people.”
Congresswoman for Michigan’s 14th District, Brenda Lawrence, followed up Holder’s dynamic speech and continued to hype up the crowd. She started her speech off strong when she stated that “… our Declaration of Independence should read ‘…all men and women are created equally,'” and she was going to make every effort to make sure it happens.
Gubernatorial candidate Gretchen Whitmer and running mate Garlin Gilchrist II addressed the crowd as well and brought the entire audience to their feet by letting them know they were up for the challenge and ready to take the Governor’s office. Congressional candidates Gretchen Driskell, Elissa Slotkin and Haley Stevens also spoke and fired up the crowd.
U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, who’s also up for re-election in the upcoming election, graced the stage with her presence and gave the audience a history lesson. She reminded them of the time of the Great Recession, “…when our country lost 8.7M jobs. And there was no place that was hit harder than Michigan.” She went on to say, “Some people thought we should let our American automobile industry go bankrupt. But not President Obama! He knew that Michigan didn’t just build the automobile industry, we built the American middle class.” Her statements began the prelude for Obama’s entrance, to which the entire auditorium rose to their feet and gave a roaring standing ovation.
As Obama took the stage, he spoke to the hearts of everyone in attendance as he reminded them that “…America is at a crossroads right now. The healthcare of millions of people is on the ballot. Making sure working families get a fair shake is on the ballot. And maybe most importantly, the character of our country is on the ballot!”
Obama continued with good news: “The good news is that when we’ve been at these types of crossroads before, America has typically made the right choice. Sometimes it’s taken a while, but eventually, we’ve made the right choices. But when that’s happened, it didn’t happen because people sat back and just let history happen. It occurred because people like you marched, and mobilized and voted to make a better history happen. That’s how we abolished slavery. That’s how we overcame the Depression. That’s how we came to liberate an entire continent across the ocean. That’s how we won women’s rights, and workers’ rights and civil rights and LGBT rights. Because somebody stood up and did the work! That’s how the story of America became a story of progress.”