October 26th, 2010
02:05 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama to Stump for Perriello Friday

(Updated 3:04 p.m. ET with Hurt campaign response)

(CNN) - In a last-minute add to his schedule, President Obama has decided to campaign at a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia on Friday for freshman Rep. Tom Perriello, one of the most vulnerable House Democrats in the nation, according to two Democratic officials.

Perriello has become a hero to some on the left for voting in favor of much of Obama's agenda - including the trifecta of the stimulus, health care reform, and cap-and-trade energy legislation - despite representing the heavily conservative Fifth Congressional District in Virginia.

While Perriello has also bucked the White House on issues like gun control and bailouts in order to establish some independence, he has taken a lot of heat back home for his high-profile votes on the administration's top initiatives.

Democratic officials privately say the Obama visit is a thank you to someone who has put his career on the line for the president. It is important symbolically for him to go to bat for Perriello because House Democrats have been upset that much of the president's calendar in recent days has been focused on trying to save Senate Democratic incumbents.

Many Democratic officials privately believe it will be extremely difficult for Perriello to beat back a strong challenge from Republican state senator Robert Hurt, especially since the freshman was only elected by 727 votes in 2008.

But the officials say they're hopeful that a presidential visit could rally just enough Democrats to help Periello pull out a victory, with a little help also from third-party conservative candidate Jeffrey Clark, who is pulling votes from Hurt.

The Republican opponent's campaign was quick to latch on to what they see as the downside of a potential visit. Hurt's spokesman emailed a statement, all too happy to tie Periello with President Obama:

"We gladly welcome President Obama to the 5th District as he campaigns on behalf of his favorite Congressman, Tom Perriello. His visit will further solidify the idea in the minds of voters that Congressman Perriello has been nothing more than a lap dog for the job killing Obama-Pelosi agenda, representing their interests, not the interests of Central and Southside Virginians. The Obama-Perriello rally will be a great time for the pair to explain to voters how their failed policies have led to over 11,000 jobs lost in the District, skyrocketing debt, a government takeover of health care, and an intrusive federal government." said Amanda Henneberg, Hurt campaign spokesman.

The White House had already confirmed that Obama will travel to four states this weekend. He will headline campaign events in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Illinois on Saturday and then will stump in Ohio on Sunday, which is expected to be his last big event before Tuesday's midterm election.

Filed under: 2010 • President Obama • Tom Perriello • Virginia
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. Tim

    Oh goody-goody, he's my hero.

    October 26, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  2. Tim

    Can you emial me when Bozo shows up? I don't want to miss the show.

    October 26, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  3. Vote for the best candidates

    Obama is garbage. Instead of campaigning, pushing through unsustainable policies, partying and vacationing, he should be studying out the best, sustainable route for the US.

    I will not vote for anyone that voted for Obamacare (which is a complete joke) or the unethical financial reform bill - which doesn't even address the problem (democratic policies and Fannie and Freddie and Barney Frank)

    October 26, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  4. John G

    "Shove it" Mr. lame duck.

    October 26, 2010 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  5. True Dem

    Go for it pres Obama!

    Dems 2010!

    October 26, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  6. Adam

    Tom Perriello is a progressive Democrat in a staunchly conservative district. The only reason that he still stands a chance is the same for which he won in 2008: he is strikingly sincere in his convictions, and has an honest faith in the political process's capacity for self-redemption.

    It's hard not to like him personally, and anyone who lives in his district and doesn't say "Dummycrat" or "Demoncrat" in regular speech knows that he is, personally, a good man.

    In an election where cronyism and corruption are huge targets, that brand of independence just might mean more to the people of Virginia's 5th District than his particular partisan views.

    October 26, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  7. S. in California Laughing In Anticipation Of How Well Democrats Turnout At The Polls

    Thank you Mr. Perriello for being a TRUE democrat and standing tough against the evils of the republican party. I hope in turn the people of Virginia remember and stand with you.

    October 26, 2010 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  8. Hugo

    Funny how Obama all of the sudden at election time releases a butt load of our tax dollars (aka stimuless) for those shovel ready jobs, 50 billion in Florida alone. Won't matter Obumwad, you can't buy our votes we are not a UNION and many of us realize the necessity of electing Republican Governor's, first order of business is to attain a majority of 34 States necessary for a Constitutional Convention! First step for repealing the existing tax system and replacing with a FAIR tax, term limits, balanced Federal budget, voter reform, etc., etc.!

    October 26, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  9. willard bullock

    Presdien t obama is not good his presdient so I don't need want vote for him again cause he have too bad his polls

    October 26, 2010 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  10. marty

    christine odonnell is now down 6 points in a new poll. She's coming back america!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GO TEA PARTY!!!

    October 26, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. T'SAH from Virginia

    I think I am going to make my way over there to RALLY with our President.... It's not that far BUT the problem is – I don't know where they are gathering!!!???????????


    If I lived in Perriello's district I would VOTE for him EASILY – BUT I will NOT vote for CAN'Tor!!!

    DEMOCRATS – Get out and VOTE on November 2, 2010 because we have got to get it together!!!

    October 26, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  12. Jeff from Va

    Yes, his career is on the line, hopefully he is on the way out, and he can get some of that "Obama Care", since he won't have a job soon.

    October 26, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  13. gt

    this guy is toast...obama and cap and trade is a major job killer,...

    October 26, 2010 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  14. Fair is Fair

    Perriello is in the low 40's – a very tough place for an incumbent to be polling. Obama is the toxic kiss of death. Chalk this one up for the GOP.

    October 26, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  15. barry

    Bye Perriello.

    October 26, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  16. Killer`s Instinct

    Mr. President –

    Whwn you go on the stump a year from now, be prepared to offer the public SIMPLE, CLEAR, and COMPELLING evidence, which they can repeat. that your administration has:

    1) Been More Transparent than other before yours.

    2) has brought change to how Washington works. [Either force GOP`ers to work in a bi-partisan manner or call them out by name early – well before the campaign]

    3) Cut Middle Class taxes – deflate the bogus "Tax & Spend" label

    4.) Force tough decisions by implmenting a 5% across the board budget reduction to reduce the deficit.

    5) Visit, excercise with Marines, Soldiers, Sailors, and Airmen. Invite military families to join you and the 1st lady at Christmas.

    if you do these things now, when you stump in2012 you can slam dunk Romney, Jeb Bush, Mike Pence, John Thune – or God-Please-Forbid-Again, Sarah Palin.

    October 26, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  17. joseyj

    Woohoo! wish I could be there.

    October 26, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  18. jpherman

    If President Obama walked on water, his detractors would try to debunk his feat before he had a chance to explain how he did it. They'd chide him for trying to imitate Jesus. They'd call his miracle a hoax perpetrated by Socialists and Marxists. Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who recently affirmed his pledge to make sure Obama fails, would lead the attack, parrotting the rhetoric of GOP's true leader, DJ Rush Limbaugh.
    Never before has a U.S. senator publicly supported the failure of a sitting President. Never before has a political party publicly declared that it will oppose everything their President proposes to make certain he isn't seen in a positive light.
    Democracy at work? Hardly. In healthy democratic societies, elections are held, people are elected and then things move forward for the good of the nation. Party politics and gaining advantage for the next election are set aside while the people's business is done. Obama ran into a group of obstructionists committed to blocking everything the President tried to do. GOP colleagues were even crass enough to pooh-pooh his Nobel Peace Prize. A GOP representative called him a liar during a joint session of Congress.
    If Republicans succeed in next week's election, we can expect more of the same during the next two years. Limbaugh's Libertarian/evangelical Christian coalition will continue to lead us back to pre-Civil War America. Those who disagree will be labeled Socialists or Marxists unworthy of being heard. The farthest right of the group will impose Biblical rule on all. It will be reminescent of Sen. Joseph McCarthy's (D-WI) shameful crusade against his political opponents in the 1950s.
    My hope is that Limbaugh's campaign fails, leaving the radical right and its ill-prepared candidates out of the complex business of governing in a global economy. We need our best team to face the challenges of a new world that will move forward with or without us. Obama remains our best hope.

    October 26, 2010 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  19. Jerry

    Is this moron/excuse of a president ever going to tackle the real issues that are affecting this country; or is he going to be on campaign mode for the rest of his one term? This man and his lapdogs have no shame.

    This is one of the most irresponsible, most lying, hypocritical presidents this country has ever elected. Thank you moronic NObamans!

    October 26, 2010 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  20. carlos

    no republiCONServatives anywhere near the Capitol, none of them, they are ineptly incompetent and an abomination

    October 26, 2010 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  21. carlos

    hurt, keep going with your negativism and you will be the one hurting at the polls......stupid.

    October 26, 2010 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |