CHARLOTTE: US President Barack Obama today made a strong pitch for a second term, arguing that he had rescued the nation weighed down by wars and a weak economy, ushering in a recovery which would be imperiled under his Republican challenger Mitt Romney.
In a prime time speech at Time Warner Cable Arena that was jam packed with some 20,000 people, including party delegates from across the nation, Obama touched upon a wide range of issues.
Obama, 51, not only reminded the achievements of his administration including the killing of Osama bin Laden and revival of the country’s economy, he took a dig on his rival Romney’s economic and foreign policies along with that of heath care which he termed as voucher care.
Obama gave a more realistic follow-up to his 2008 “hope and change” message. Weighed down by wars and high unemployment, he appeared more subdued and less exuberant than last time.
The first non-white President of the United States spelled out his new vision of creating one million new jobs by 2016, doubling exports by 2015, cut oil imports in half by 2020, recruit 1000,000 math and science teachers over next one decade and reduce the country’s deficit by USD 4 trillion over the next decade.
“We learn from our mistakes. But we keep our eyes fixed on that distant horizon knowing that providence is with us and that we are surely blessed to be citizens of the greatest nation on earth,” Obama said, in his speech that was marked with several rounds of applause and cheers from the audience, prominent among those included the First Lady Michele Obama, and his two daughters Malia and Sasha. . The entire leadership of the Democratic Party and several members of his Cabinet were present.
“The election four years ago wasn’t about me. It was about you. My fellow citizens – you were the change,” Obama said.
“If you share that faith with me, if you share that hope with me, I ask you tonight for your vote. If you reject the notion that this nation’s promise is reserved for the few, your voice must be heard in this election. If you reject the notion that our government is forever beholden to the highest bidder, you need to stand up in this election,” said Obama, who is running neck and neck in the opinion polls with two months to go until the election.
Obama and his campaign team hopes that this convention and his speech would give the much needed boost to his election campaign and would help him take considerable lead over Romney.
During his speech, Obama also took a dig at the negative campaign being launched by the Romney campaign.
“I know campaigns can seem small, even silly sometimes.
Trivial things become big distractions. Serious issues become sound bites. The truth gets buried under an avalanche of money and advertising,” he said.
“And if you’re sick of hearing me approve this message, believe me, so am I,” he said.
“But when all is said and done, when you pick up that ballot to vote, you will face the clearest choice of any time in a generation. Over the next few years big decisions will be made in Washington on jobs, the economy, taxes and deficits, energy, education, war and peace –decisions that will have a huge impact on our lives and on our children’s lives for decades to come,” he told his countrymen.
“And on every issue, the choice you face won’t just be between two candidates or two parties. It will be a choice between two different paths for America, a choice between two fundamentally different visions for the future,” he added.
In an apparent reference to his Democratic party’s allegations against Romney that he shipped jobs overseas, Obama sought another term to reward those companies that bring jobs inside they country and end tax breaks on those who create jobs overseas. -PTI