ORLANDO, Fla. – Former President Barack Obama came to Orlando on Tuesday to host an event for his former second-in-command, Vice President Joe Biden.
Obama has been making the rounds on behalf of his friend, who’s running against President Donald Trump, in the final days leading up to the 2020 election on Nov. 3.
The drive-in rally was held outside Camping World Stadium Tuesday with the former president taking the stage at noon.
Obama energized the crowd by drawing parallels, listing things Trump has done during the past four years and explaining what Biden and his running mate Sen. Kamala Harris would do instead.
“Florida has the highest enrollment under the Affordable Care Act of any state in America. Last week Trump went out and said he hopes the Supreme Court takes your health insurance away. Don’t boo, vote,” Obama said. “And last night he installed the Supreme Court justice he hopes will help him do it.”
He said Americans will see improvements to their health care if Biden and Harris are elected.
WATCH LIVE | Former President Barack Obama holds Orlando drive-in rally for Joe Biden
WATCH LIVE | Former President Barack Obama holds Orlando drive-in rally for Joe Biden. https://bit.ly/3otXEtDPosted by News 6 WKMG / ClickOrlando on Tuesday, October 27, 2020
“This is serious and Joe and Kamala will protect your health care, they will expand Medicare, they’ll make insurance more affordable for everybody because Joe knows that a president’s first job is to keep us safe from all threats: foreign, domestic and microscopic,” Obama said.
The coronavirus pandemic was anther major talking point Tuesday with Obama saying that Biden would find a way to make testing free and widely available, distribute a vaccine and ensure that workers receive paid sick leave should they become infected.
In terms of non policy-related issues, Obama also questioned Trump’s behavior when it comes to social media and the way he talks about some of his political opponents.
“I mean, we’ve gotten so numb to what is bizarre behavior. We have a president right now who lies multiple times a day and this is not my claim -- even Fox News sometimes says, ‘Well, what he says isn’t really true. He didn’t mean it.’ It’s not normal behavior... Even Florida man wouldn’t be doing some of this stuff,” Obama said.
Ultimately Obama’s message to attendees was to make sure their voices are heard because it could be a tight race and every vote counts, especially in swing states like Florida.
“We can’t just dream for a better future, we’ve got to fight for a better future. We’ve got to out hustle the other side. We’ve got to vote like never before,” Obama said. “So make a plan. Vote as early as you can, grab your friends and your family, get them to vote all the way up and down the ticket. And if we pour all our efforts into this final week, if we vote like never before, then we will elect Joe Biden as president of the United States. We will elect Kamala Harris as vice president of the United States.”
Both candidates have been spending a lot of time in Florida ahead of the presidential election. The Sunshine State, in particular the I-4 corridor from Orlando to Tampa, is critical to winning the election. Trump visited The Villages, Ocala and Sanford last week and voted in West Palm Beach on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Biden campaign is using celebrity power to encourage people to vote.
Rapper and activist Common performed Saturday in Orlando at Florida Rights Restoration Coalition’s #FreeTheVote event and took part in a roundtable discussion with union workers, representing thousands of workers in the service industry.
On Sunday, actress America Ferrera was in Orlando and Tampa for Biden events on a “Get out the Vote” bus tour.
Obama started his campaign rounds in Philadelphia and made another stop in Miami on Saturday.
Obama already had hosted virtual events geared to younger voters and lent his name to texts and emails encouraging supporters to register to vote and donate money to the campaign. He has also been a big money draw for the campaign. One virtual fundraiser he headlined with Biden in June brought in $7.6 million, and he’s raised money and appeared in ads for down-ballot Democrats.
Obama himself has already cast his 2020 ballot and no surprise, he voted for his friend Joe. Obama said he voted by mail like millions of Americans will this year.