WFSU News Team
Sun November 4, 2012
President Clinton At FSU: Obama Believes 'We Need To Do This Together'
The Obama and Romney presidential campaigns are making their final Florida push before Tuesday’s election. An Obama rally featuring former President Bill Clinton drew a crowd of 4,100 to Florida State University on Friday night.
Clinton spoke for about an hour in front of the Unconquered statue outside of FSU’s Doak Campbell stadium. For several Tallahassee residents, the former president’s appearance was reason enough to make it out to the rally.
“I already voted, so really, I’m just here because I’m excited about Bill Clinton," Gaby Perez said.
FSU senior Jeanette Fernandez said, “Listening to him speak, he’s a really charming speaker, obviously, so that’s really cool." Her friend, Vanessa Llovet, added, “He is. And he’s handsome. He still is.”
Aziz Ismael, a student from the West African nation of Mauritania, was dancing near the front of the crowd before the rally. He said, Clinton’s campaigning on behalf of Obama boosts the president’s credibility.
“I’m not voting. I don’t have the right to vote," he said. "But I’ve come here to tell people who can vote, to vote for Obama.”
And Erica Foster said, she drove from Birmingham, Ala., to show her support for Obama.
“Alabama is a Republican state, but I’m willing to come out to a state to witness to them on the changes that they can make, because it’s a life-changing situation that’s going on," she said.
Clinton told the crowd that the president has done a great job of trying to work with Republicans in Congress.
He said, “I like President Obama’s willingness, no matter how mean they are to him, no matter how many times they say no, to keep the door open and say, ‘This America belongs to all of us. We need to do this together.'”
Clinton also applauded Obama’s foreign policy decisions.
"He has taken care of our national security. He has used force when necessary, pursued diplomacy vigorously, tried to build new networks," he said, "and he’s got a heck of a Secretary of State.”
The rally also attracted protests from a handful of supporters of Gov. Mitt Romney, like chairman of the FSU College Republicans, Matt Hoopfer. After Clinton’s speech, he said the former president was unfairly attacking Romney.
“He also talked about Mitt Romney’s tax plan, saying that the numbers just don’t add up and that it would overburden the economy, which is also just not true," Hoopfer said.
Romney is scheduled to campaign in Sanford on Monday. And first lady Michelle Obama will be in Orlando.