It was obvious from Saturday’s rally that President Barack Obama is in full campaign mode.
Obama spoke to a crowd of about 14,000 at the Schottenstein Center at Ohio State to officially kick off his re-election campaign.
His speech, like almost all his campaign speeches, focused on a few over-arching themes that we have heard from him since 2008.
Themes of “hope,” “change” and a “forward-thinking America” were prevalent in his speech from the start.
In many ways, Saturday’s rally was a lot like the one I attended in 2008, in terms of rhetoric and the tone of his speech.
Only this time, Obama had to address his policies and the choices he has made as president, as well as fire back at critics who think that these decisions have harmed our country.
Although rallies typically contain more of a “rah-rah” tone, Obama touched on some important issues, even through the frequent ovations and cheers of “Four more years!”
Issues like education, the economy, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and health care were all topics he addressed.
Even though Obama was surrounded by his supporters, he still made sure his speech never strayed too far left.
It was clear that his speech was geared toward every voter in the country, not just Democrats.
Obama admitted, “Not every regulation is smart. Not every tax dollar is spent wisely. Not every person can be helped who refuses to help themselves.”
Although he was quick to follow up this statement by saying, “But that’s not an excuse to tell the vast majority of responsible, hard-working Americans, ‘You’re on your own.'”
The president also gave some statistics to back up his claims.
Here are some of the numbers he presented:
-“My opponent won’t tell us how he’d pay for his new, $5 trillion tax cut – a tax cut that gives an average of $250,000 to every millionaire in this country.”
Although these exact figures seem to be more of a rough estimate from the Obama campaign, Republican presidential hopeful and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is in favor of a 20-percent tax cut for six tax brackets, including the 10, 15, 25, 28, 33 and 35 percent brackets.
Romney is in favor of a 20-percent tax cut for six tax brackets, including the 10, 15, 25, 28, 33 and 35 percent brackets.
Romney also defended himself against Obama’s claim that he favors the rich.
“All the roads in America are connected. You can’t attack parts of America and assume America will rise and become strong. I won’t attack this executive, or that successful person,” Romney said during an April 27 speech at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio.
-“Businesses got back to the basics, exports surged. And over four million jobs were created in the last two years – more than one million of those in the last six months alone.”
Once again, I could not find these exact figures from any other source besides the president, vice president and other members of his campaign staff. However, these numbers seem to be in response to the April jobs report, which stated that only 115,000 jobs were created last month. This was far less than economists projected.
While Saturday’s rally gave voters a glimpse into Obama’s campaign, the real test will come during debate season. It is easy for the president to broadcast his view to thousands of adoring supporters, but it will be much more interesting to see what he says to a national audience that does not all support his viewpoints.
One thing is for sure though: Obama is in for a fiercely competitive election.