January 20th, 2008
02:10 PM ET
6 years ago

Pop star Usher to appear at Obama rally

COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) - Few people can say they've graced more magazine covers than Barack Obama - but Usher is certainly one of them. Now they'll share the same photo-op.

CNN has learned that the R&B superstar and heart-throb will appear on the same stage with Obama at a rally in Orangeburg on Tuesday evening.

An Obama spokesman said Usher won't perform at the event, but will speak about why he is supporting the Illinois senator.

It's not the first time the singer has stumped for Obama. Usher first appeared at a rally for the senator in Atlanta back in September of last year.

"I stand here representing our youth," he said at the time, reading from index cards. "If you want change you have to get involved."

In light of the Obama campaign's efforts to court young African-American voters here, the event's location at South Carolina State University is not insignificant: it's the state's largest and oldest historically black university.

Actress Kerry Washington, who starred in films like "Ray" and "The Last King of Scotland," will also be at the event.

– CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (318 Responses)
  1. Ibeam

    Dear Clintons,

    I am writing to explain something to you that your political advisors have failed to mention to you. Your current selfish political strategy to racially identify Obama as an African American candidate and thus marginalize him in the eyes of white America is morally corrupt and very dangerous to our nation. I’m a 44 year old America., I’m a son, a grandson, a father, and a husband. Maybe I’m a current or future Colin Powell, Tiger Wood, Magic Johnson, Robert Johnson, Bill Cosby, Sec of State, congressman, senator, mayor, reporter, fireman, policeman, teacher or the secret service member protecting you now. But it is not important to you. You tried to tell me that if I get in the way you will remind me, America and the world that I’m a person of color and at any time you will call the dogs of hate against me to put me in my place. What are you thinking?

    Today your target is Obama, but tomorrow it may be Pedro, because you need the anti-immigration vote, or another name not in line with Smith or Brown because you want to play one side of the nation against the other. Look, I’m not scared of you. This country has turned the page. Some of your self serving black political supporters may not want you to believe that they no longer speak for black America, that we speak for ourselves and we do not speak in racial terms but in the terms of the nature of one’s character. Maybe it’s a case that you and the people around you do not know any better. Than I guess the point is simple. You are dated…Your time has come and gone. Your style of politics has seen the last of it’s days. In the end, you have one vote just like I do. I will use mine to reaffirm the thought that I’m an American and that I will never be afraid of my fellow American. I will stand tall and be counted. I’m not afraid of you. But you are afraid of me.

    January 20, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  2. B B

    January 20, 2008 4:07 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    I totally agree that Senator Obama's speech at amrtin luther kings church today was historic… beautiful. Indeed, I sat there with tears of admiration and respect running down my face, just as I did decades ago after just graduating from law school at the top of my class but being denied opportunties just because I was a women. The problems of this country cannot be resolved without a leader such as Obama who embodies the American dream and seeks unity among all of us to end bipartisian stalemate and bickering, whatever our race, gender or creed.

    While I've always wanted to see a woman elected president, I am shocked and disappointed at the campaign tactics being waged by both Clintons. This is not the 1990's. The economic problems, especially given the unknown trillions of dollars lost due to the waging of an insupportable war based on lies and fear-mongering, are much more intractable. Our only hope is to be led by a president who can reach out to all Americans, whether Democrats, Republicans and/or independents, and the only presidential candidate with the experience, strength, integrity and humanity of Senator Obama is capable of this

    Nominating Mrs. Clinton truly will unite the Republicans however divided and disappointed they are by their candidates.

    January 20, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  3. Laurie

    Hey kids, please take off the caps lock keys.

    January 20, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  4. Michi

    Voting for Hillary is voting for the same old stuff. Same divisiveness seen with Bill Clinton and George Bush, same polarization, same Clinton enemies on the constant attack, same establishment types who want to stay in power which the Clinton's, same old stale junk out of Washington day in and day out, same old gridlock.

    January 20, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  5. Bryan, Illinois

    Obama represents the change our country needs. It is about time to seefresh blood in the White House. Even more important than that, we need someone with good judgment, and the potential to win the election from the Republicans. That person is Barack Obama!

    January 20, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  6. Jimmy, Oklahoma Feb. 5th

    I'm real sorry that this has become about race. It should just be about the issue's, but Barrack Obama's supporters are using words like "your own kind" etc. Barack is picking up Black Support, but in making this about race draws a line in the sand. With numbers of black supporters has gone up by 25%, well his numbers has hardly gone up like that nor has Clintons going down. Right now Senator Obama is losing 2 votes of other races to every black 1.5 votes that he picks up that are black, only because it is nolonger about Senator Obama but about his race, only his supporters and the media are to blame for that. I am sure that Senator Clinton will still fight for the black people as she does for other races, that is who she is. SHE IS FOR EQUAL RIGHTS FOR EVERYONE RED, WHITE, BLACK, BROWN ,YELLOW, it does not matter unless of coarse you are Karl Rove or George Bush. Good Luck Senator Obama, I for ONE would try to tame down my supporters they are sure making a mess of things for you. The Black power chants and all. I am for American Power, your color does not make any difference.

    Senaotr Clinton for President

    January 20, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  7. Natasha

    If Obama wins the Dem nom....what makes you think he will win himself against the GOP either? Thats what I'd like to know.

    January 20, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  8. ciliziman

    Did you mean latinos votes in Nevada!

    January 20, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  9. Thomas - Reno, NV

    Hillary is ready to make the wrong choices on Day ONE! Obama has a proven record. If you don't believe me, read up on him. Take a real hard look at the Clinton record as well. I don't think being misinformed by HRC makes you an informed voter.

    Blind Faith in bad leaders is not Patriotism. Hillary is running her campaign very similarly to GW. Obama is the only candidate who is attempting to get support from both parties, while Hillary divides and conquers.

    I will not support Bill Clinton in the White House for 4 more years.

    January 20, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  10. JohnS

    I think Jeff has the BEST posting on this bolg. Most Independents, like me, and a few moderate Republicans are open and even willing to vote with the Democrates for either Obama or Edwards. Imagine an Obama-Edwards Ticket; a perfect win.

    But, as Jeff has said eloquently, this one is for the Democrats to throw it away again by putting Hillary out there as a nominee. Can you imagine any Independent or moderate Republican (even in the House or Senate) ever playing it along with Hillary? I hope the Dems wake up to this REALITY.

    January 20, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  11. Jess

    Rathdrum is exactly right. (first comment) I am a left leaning independent and could never see myself voting for another Clinton. And there are many people, many, who feel the same way. Most of the people in my circle cannot stand her dirty tactics and will not vote for her. So, Clinton loyalists, go ahead and put another Republican in the White House. More and more people want change, not the same old thing. But I guess the Clinton supporters really are just a different side of same coin as republicans. Sorry, but moderation is the way to win this race for democrats.

    January 20, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  12. Jimmy, Oklahoma Feb. 5th

    I'm real sorry that this has become about race. It should just be about the issue's, but Barrack Obama's supporters are using words like "your own kind" etc. Barack is picking up Black Support, but in making this about race draws a line in the sand. With numbers of black supporters has gone up by 25%, well his numbers has hardly gone up like that nor has Clintons going down. Right now Senator Obama is losing 2 votes of other races to every black 1.5 votes that he picks up that are black, only because it is nolonger about Senator Obama but about his race, only his supporters and the media are to blame for that. I am sure that Senator Clinton will still fight for the black people as she does for other races, that is who she is. SHE IS FOR EQUAL RIGHTS FOR EVERYONE RED, WHITE, BLACK, BROWN ,YELLOW, it does not matter unless of coarse you are Karl Rove or George Bush. Good Luck Senator Obama, I for ONE would try to tame down my supporters they are sure making a mess of things for you. The Black power chants and all. I am for American Power, your color does not make any difference.

    Senator Clinton for President

    January 20, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  13. holly

    I see everyone elses speech given today except for Obama's. Where's the coverage?

    January 20, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  14. Laurie

    Don't kid yourself, the GOP hates the Clintons with a nearly obsessive passion.
    Most of the Reps I know, loathe her.

    January 20, 2008 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  15. Sbenton

    Did everyone forget that its all about the delegates to get the nomination. Yes, Hillary won in N.H and Nevada, but Obama is beating her with delegates. Hillary is not who I want running this country. She talks about experience, she has never lead anything, she has only been apart of boards. Hillary is running on Bill Clinton's record, not her own. What a leg up she has on this election. If she was not married to Bill Clinton, would you even know who she was, or what she stood for.

    People get over the hype!!!
    Aren't you tired of the same people in the White House

    January 20, 2008 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  16. David Stanton

    I will only vote for Hillary (and I guess Bill because there are two people running for a return to the White House) IF she apolgizes to me, the troops, and the rest of America for voting to authorize Bush to wage war on Iraq (the judgement and experience we do not want for America).

    Until then, I am voting for Obama our best progressive and most electable choice for President – Obama '08 – See you in South Carolina!

    January 20, 2008 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  17. Chris from Houston

    Oh. My god. I watch CNN everyday and all i see is Hilliary or Bill and sometimes Edwards. Where is your coverage of Obama. I see nothing. Is the media so slanted in its coverage. I can watch all day on an off day and never see anything about Obama unless it is in reference to something negative. Where is the fair reporting in that. CNN just lost my support. Way to go Usher!!!

    January 20, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  18. Cliff,Baltimore MD

    Today, the day before our national celebration of one of the greatest American/ human being to ever grace this planet, Dr. Martin L King Jr. I am convinced, that Dr. Kings dream will never be realized.

    Im ashamed of all of you so called "Americans" and cowardly half-hearted patriots, who would deny Sen. Obama the opportunity to engage your minds on the basis of his race. You've disrespected your ancestors..ancestors of all different colors, tounges, and faiths for they struggled to open up opportunity for themselves and all people. I've read the nazi literature circulating on-line claiming Obama is a "Terrorist" "Muslim" "Racist""Crook" and I wonder at what point do the producers of this hate discover their conscience. Then I question the integrity of the men and women who are complicit in development of these lies. History has proven that God shows little mercy towards the unjust. With all the emphasis I command, I pray that your souls are not inked on the pages of the unjust.

    It is well within your rights to support whomever you like, but the defamation and racial attacks that have taken place are more fit of the SS than the US.

    Despite my words I understand that most of you wont understand. Those who I have pointed out and those who disagree with me will not read my post completely, that is the nature of this battle. Ignorance, Intolerance, and the inability to utilize empathy.

    I wish good luck to all of the democratic candidates... I firmly believe that any of the top 3 would make a wonderful president. This is the greatest cast of candidates i've ever seen. Sen. Clinton, Sen. Obama, Sen. Edwards. Our party is very lucky to have such an all-star cast.

    Happy MLK Day!

    January 20, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  19. Jenny26

    I am supporting Obama because he is the best person for the job. Not because of race or any other superficial reason. He is the one person that can bring us together in this nation where hatred runs rampant. Obama is indicative of what America should stand for- A great person that is full of compassion, humility and ready to lead our country to greatness. He represents what is right about America. To hate him because of the color of his skin is really to hate yourself. He is both black and white. Unity is what we need and it is what he stands for. GO OBAMA!

    January 20, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  20. pam , s.c.

    hillary's new campaign slogan ' I WILL BE THE FIRST HISPANIC PRESIDENT' the voters will decide the fate of these two canidates not the clintons. go obama

    January 20, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  21. Dwayne-New Jersey

    Senator Clinton for President! She is more than a rhetoric and hype. She as substance, depth and experience! These qualities Obama lacks. She desires change and that has been the hallmark of her career; a change for children, change in Education, change for the minority (women, people of color), change in the economy, change for the middle and lower class. The only thing that hasn't change is her faithfulness and loyalty to her husband and family!

    Senator Clinton deserves much respect. She will be the nominee and our next PRESIDENT! CLINTON 08'

    January 20, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  22. martha

    what does ursher know about what it takes to be presedent....he has issues in his own house hold and with in himself that he needs to deal with before he comes out and speak for or about anyone.....

    For the rest of you...you are basically are voting for Obama simply because he is black....that is not a pre req for being a pres...or anything else for that matter....let's for once use our brains....

    If you were hired for a job simply because yo were black....you would feel some kind of way.....I would like to think if you have any type of respect for youself: you except a position given you based on your exp. and skills....not how you would or you could.....what have you done to back up that claim that you can do all of these things....nothing....that is nothing that I have HEARD as of today.....

    But people go ahead and vote for your next presedent becuse he is BLACK.....OR HALF WHITE OR WHAT EVER HE WANTS TO CALL HIMSELF TODAY....

    I am not saying vote for Clinton or Obama...what I am saying is that do ride the wave...yes the tide is high right now but vote for the person whom you feel best will serve your needs realistically........you and your family......those Rich..Mega Stars Like Oprah...she makes a Billion a year....what needs does she have....Ursher....he makes millions.....how can you relate.....

    It is up to you America........

    January 20, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  23. Phil Memphis, TN

    So Jess, you would vote for anopther Republican before Clinton? Then you are not left leaning, or if you are, you are willing to cut off your nose to spite your face.

    You are willing to continue to watch our young men die in a war a criminal Republican administration lied us into, continue to see our financial stability squandered, continue to allow the government to ignore the constitution, allow them to continue to widen their tracking and spying on american citizens; all because you have this deep-seated hatred of Hillary.. for what?

    If you are a left leaning independent I'm a right wing religious zealot.

    I don;t think there are many Dems out ther who really think that way. you guys must be Republican plants.

    January 20, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  24. Dennis

    The old are afraid of change, go to a govt office and ask the old staff that you want to go electronic and watch the reaction

    January 20, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  25. Cliff,Baltimore MD

    Just for clarification, my comments go out to all that apply white folks and people of color. Republicans and Democrats... I have observed this bigotry on all sides of the table, even amongst Obama suppoters who think there defending Obama when in reality your fueling the fire. Take a step back and look at whats taking place here.

    January 20, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
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