Obama hoping hip hop concert/rally will help re-ignite youth vote that boosted his 2008 run

By Erica Werner, AP
Thursday, September 30, 2010

Obama aims to excite young voters at concert/rally

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama was addressing supporters at a hip hop concert and rally Thursday night, seeking to re-energize the youth vote that helped propel him to the White House,

The Democratic National Committee enlisted hip hop artist B.o.B to perform for a sold-out crowd of 3,000 at DAR Constitution Hall. The crowd also was hearing from Obama’s 2008 campaign manager, David Plouffe (pluhf), and DNC Chairman Tim Kaine on the importance of the youth vote to the November elections, which are expected to be tough on Democrats.

The event was organized for the DNC’s gen44 group, which tries to cultivate young leaders. It was expected to raise $750,000.

Beforehand, Obama spoke at a small fundraising dinner at the home of John Phillips and Linda Douglass, where guests paid $30,400 each to raise $1 million for the Democratic Party.

“We’re going through a very tough time. … So people are feeling it,” Obama said, reflecting on what he heard from the public this week during a trip to four states.

He said people are anxious and, “This election cycle’s going to be tough because of that reality.”

His message to those people: “That hope you were feeling when I came in, there’s no reason to lose it. Because the answers are still within our grasp. The question is do we have the will to do it.”

Citing his big rally in Madison, Wis., Obama said Democrats are “waking up.”

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