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October 22, 2014

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election 2012:

With focus still on Libya, president rallies supporters in Las Vegas

Obama addresses attack on consulate during speech

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

President Barack Obama enters the Cashman Center for a campaign stop Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012.

Updated Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012 | 8:15 p.m.

Obama Speaks at Cashman Center: Sept. 12, 2012

President Barack Obama speaks during a campaign stop at Cashman Center Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. Launch slideshow »

Sept 12: Obama Departure

President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One to depart McCarran International Airport Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012.  Obama rallied supporters during a campaign stop at the Cashman Center. Launch slideshow »

President Barack Obama capped a hectic day in which he awoke to news of a fatal attack on a U.S. diplomatic outpost with a campaign rally at Cashman Center.

According to the campaign, the speech and the president’s schedule were adjusted so he could address the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya that killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others Tuesday.

Obama first gave a statement on the attack in a Wednesday morning news conference at the White House before visiting the State Department.

Obama took the Cashman Center stage just after 6 p.m. and started his address to the crowd of approximately 8,000 with remarks on the attack. The president said the government would be “relentless” in its pursuit of those who attacked the consulate.

“I assure you we are going to bring their criminals to justice,” he said. “And we want to send the message around the world that no act of terror will dim the light of the values that we proudly shine on the rest of the world.”

The president then segued into statements on the election, delivering a wide-ranging speech that highlighted contrasting positions between himself and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Standing in front of a banner reading “Forward,” the president took a cue from his scenery and peppered the word throughout his speech.

“We are not going back, we are going forward, we are going forward,” he said. “We are going forward Nevada, and that’s why I’m running for a second term.”

The president said while Republicans have focused new proposals for tax cuts on the wealthy, he is focused on the middle and lower classes.

“We don’t believe in an economy that flows from the top down, we believe in an economy that flows from the middle out and from the bottom up,” Obama said. “We believe in an economy that gives everyone a chance.”

The message focusing on the middle class, education and job growth resonated with Kenadie Richardson and Cheryl Lawrence. The two friends, who attended the event together, said they voted for Obama in 2008 and, if anything, are more motivated to do what they can to help the president win in November.

“My feelings are even stronger now than four years ago,” Lawrence said. “He came in and is trying to clean up the mess he was left. You can’t expect to him to have fixed everything in four years.”

Richardson, a business consultant, said she believed Obama would be better for the middle and lower classes.

“This Republican strategy of pull yourself up by the bootstraps is impossible, it’s not a strategy at all,” Richardson said. “We need everybody working together and contributing. Mitt Romney and the Republicans don’t care about the middle class. The middle class is disappearing, and the Republicans think if you help the poor it’s socialism. It’s ridiculous.”

The president touted programs to help underwater homeowners refinance their mortgages, and said he was willing to do more. Similar comments on housing made by the president earlier in the day elicited a rapid response from the Romney campaign.

“President Obama’s revisionist history on housing is laughable. Tonight, he told Americans that he pursued steps to aid the housing market, yet it was reported just this week that the president also said, ‘We will not roll out an aggressive housing plan,’” Romney spokesman Mason Harrison said in a statement, referencing a quote from the president in Bob Woodward’s new book, “The Price of Politics,” made during discussions on the stimulus package.

“As Nevadans have faced foreclosure, declining home values and seen their hard earned wealth wiped away, they will not buy the president’s spin and will hold him to account for his failed record,” Harrison said.

Referencing a plan from Romney’s running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, to restructure Medicare in part by issuing vouchers to recipients, Obama said he would "never turn Medicare into a voucher.”

He also defended tighter regulations on banks, and attacked calls to privatize Social Security, saying he would not “hand the program over to Wall Street like a stack of poker chips.”

Several times during his 29-minute speech the president was serenaded with boisterous chants of “four more years” that echoed off the walls in the cavernous events hall. “I never said in 2008 that it was going to be easy. As President Clinton said, it’s going to take more than a few years to solve challenges that have been building up over decades,” Obama said, referencing former President Bill Clinton’s speech last week at the Democratic National Convention.

This was Obama's eighth visit to the Silver State this year. He was last in Las Vegas on Aug. 22, when he spoke about education during a rally at Canyon Springs High School.

After the Cashman Center rally, Obama returned to McCarran International Airport, reboarded Air Force One and took off for a Thursday campaign event in the Denver area. His total time in Las Vegas was about 3 1/2 hours.

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  1. I missed the event. Did he insult Las Vegas again today?

  2. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  3. The fact is that Pres. Obama cast Las Vegas in a bad light twice. It was insulting to many and it caused groups to cancel conventions in Las Vegas at a time when we could least afford it.

    Quit whitewashing for the President and just admit he messed up.

  4. Obama said you shouldn't blow your kids' college fund in Vegas. Then he said firms taking bailout cash shouldn't be taking lavish vacations to places like Vegas.

    For those with a brain, it's sage advice.

  5. "Obama's State Depar[sic]t 1st statement after[sic] the murder of the US ambassador was to say that America was sorry for making people mad."

    An error of basic chronology. Shouldn't be surprised, given the source.

    The "statement" that Jim Nance, err jfnance32, err SgtRockforBrains is referring to was not a statement, but a facebook post from the Egyptian embassy that came hours BEFORE our Ambassador lost his life in a neighboring country.

    Jfnance32, err, SgtRockforBrains apparently thinks every tweet, text and facebook update from every government agency has Obama's explicit support.

    Again, I'm not surprised, given the source.

    Get the facts:

    "Romney said the embassy in Cairo denounced the film - called "Innocence of Muslims" - after the mission in Egypt was stormed, suggesting that President Barack Obama's administration had bowed to pressure from demonstrators."

    "But Reuters correspondents in Cairo said the embassy posted the statement on its Facebook page on Tuesday morning before the protest began, not after it had started."

    "A senior U.S. official also said the statement, which condemned "the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims," was released before any demonstrations had begun."

    "The statement was later pulled from the Internet because it was not coordinated with the State Department in Washington, the official said."

    "Critics, including some Republican allies, said Romney was too quick to use the Libya and Egypt incidents as fodder for a campaign attack before knowing the full extent of what happened in the two North African countries."

    Exploit the death of an American hero in order to score political points? Typical GOP.

  6. More and more Mitt Romney and the truth seem to be becoming strangers. I've watched his contentions, for example, that President Obama claimed his stimulus plan would prevent unemployment from exceeding 8%, that the President goes around the world apologizing for America, and that he's trashing welfare to work. All these have been widely discredited as untrue by multiple fact checkers. Despite this Romney persists.

    I can only conclude that he is either so blindly ambitious to be President he'll do anything or he is unable to admit his own mistakes or both. These are serious character flaws that should not be ignored in voting decisions.

  7. What is very sad, as Americans, we are not openly supporting the President during this time of attack against the embassy in Libya. Both parties, all parties, should be supporting the President in supporting American embassy all over the world.

    People, you are safe for many reasons, President Obama is a big part of our safety. Where is your support for the President? For America! Show some gratitude people! You all who are currently enjoying American freedom and independence...You didn't fight for this! This freedom was fought long ago by "real" American Patriots, being maintained by our current man and woman at the front lines. They don't hate America!

    Plan and simple, if your not supporting our President,...any President, during a time of attack against American, YOUR NOT AN AMERICA! Your something else!!!.

    Is this country so full of bias, prejudice, believing lies and only thinking of self...forget your neighbor, and just having outright hate, that we as a nation, as Americans, would not support the hand that feeds our freedom and independence? What the hell have we've become???

    Bigotry and Hatred. If this is you, your group, your family of Un-Americans. Do us all a big favor and leave the country!!!! And don't come back!!!!

  8. @mikegino,

    The assumption of your comments in using "we" lead to belief all of Americans are a state of bigotry and hatred? Let just take it as sarcasm.

    The hope is your not part of the "we".

  9. For those who complained that Obama continued to campaign during this crisis - may I remind you that the Oval Office goes "with the President" when he travels. Air Force One not only is fully equipped with weapons, it has the best in high tech equipment on board, you know - computers, cell phones, direct line telephones, etc. My goodness, it even has toilets!! This job is 24/7, 365. Even IF your Messiah wins, he will have access to the same things when he goes and visits his rich billionaire supporters under the guise of "official business".