Thursday, September 6, 2012

Obama explains his risky move

President Barack Obama just hung up with 65,000 people who had their hopes dashed and won't be seeing his acceptance speech in Charlotte tonight.

"I just want to begin by saying how much I regret that we're not all gathering in one place," Obama said.

His campaign wanted to maximize people's participation in the convention and his campaign, he said. "That's why we wanted to take a chance" by having the final night at the outdoor Bank of America Stadium. Democrats announced Wednesday they would move tonight's events to Time Warner Cable Arena.

"The problem," Obama said, "was a safety issue. I could not ask you (and authorities) to subject themselves to the risk of severe thunderstorms. You can imagine with all the nagging and security issues involved, getting 70,000 people into a place ... and getting them out of there (in case of storms) is even tougher. If we started seeing severe thunderstorms and lightning in particular, it would have been a problem.

"I know it's disappointing. ... My main message is, you can't let a little thunder and lightning get us down. We're going to have to roll with it."

Weather.com forecasts clear skies with zero percent chance of rain at 10 p.m. tonight. Forecasters say there's a 10 to 30 percent chance of rain and isolated storms in the afternoon and early evening hours.

Obama did not take questions. He said his campaign would try to set up events where people who got left out by the switch will get to see him.

The whole episode is an unnecessary misstep for the campaign. The weather is expected to be gorgeous tonight. Organizers knew there was a chance of rain in Charlotte in late summer when they announced months ago the event would be at the stadium. If anything, the weather tonight is expected to be nicer than you would have baked into your calculations when the original plan was drawn up.

We doubt many voters will switch their vote or stay home based on the Obama campaign's overabundance of caution. But in a state that you won by less than one-half of one-percent in 2008, doing anything to dampen voter enthusiasm is an extremely risky move.

Taylor Batten


8 comments:

SECfan said...

Chance of severe weather in Charlotte tonight 0%, this sin't new

Tandemfusion said...

Really look silly. . .

I don't recall the last time an event at the stadium was cancelled a day in advance due to the possibility of precip. . .

Shamash said...

So where was that "big tent" we keep hearing Democrats brag about?

par said...

what ever happened to the Kennedy Democrats. "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country." -JFK 1961. "We need people to become less reliant on government." - RFK 1964 DNC.

MarkB said...

If the stadium is already set up, can we get a shot of the empty seats? Seems fitting.

TexGirl said...

Nobody is reporting on another possible scenario... they needed thousands of volunteers, but all along they were going to have the event in the arena, not the stadium. What better way to get that many volunteers than to promise them seats to see the President's acceptance speech in person? Exactly the same scenario as when 98% of the black population voted for Obama, and during his term the black population suffered the most. But most of them will still blindly vote for him again because they believe the lies and false promises

Wiley Coyote said...

All I have heard is the speakers talking about the past, mainly the 60's...

Good grief...

If Obama gets re-elected, you get what you vote for.

DNICE said...

Mmmm, over the past hour to two hours I have continued to see lightning flashing in the Charlotte sky. It may not have been a popular decision to move this event but it can be unnerving to be sitting on the top level of Bank of America seeing flashes of lightning, which can strike from miles away.

The chance of something happening just isn't worth it. Making the decision early also prevented many people from driving or flying into Charlotte and then being turned away at the last minute on Thursday afternoon.