Obama's speech to move indoors
September 5th, 2012
10:05 AM ET
2 years ago

Obama's speech to move indoors

Charlotte, North Carolina (CNN) - After days of bad weather, President Barack Obama's re-election campaign and Democratic National Convention organizers have decided to change the venue of the president's acceptance speech Thursday in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Instead of holding the final night at the Bank of America stadium as planned, the event will move indoors to the Time Warner Cable arena, where the first two days of the convention have taken place.

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"We have been monitoring weather forecasts closely and several reports predict thunderstorms in the area, therefore we have decided to move Thursday's proceedings to Time Warner Cable Arena to ensure the safety and security of our delegates and convention guests," said DNCC CEO Steve Kerrigan.

Officials had already handed out 65,000 tickets for the event at the Bank of America stadium, but the Time Warner Cable Arena-home to NBA's Charlotte Bobcats-can seat up to 21,000. As a result, thousands will be turned away.

"We're disappointed they won't be able to join us in person," one organizer said. "But we are encouraging people to organize watch parties at their homes, in their neighborhoods, with their friends."

Officials added they plan to host a separate event at a later time for those who had credentialed for the stadium. They did not elaborate on when exactly that event would take place, only saying "sometime before Election Day."

Some argued this week that convention organizers had failed to fill the stadium, and moving the event to a smaller, more-packed venue would provide better optics for the president's speech

DNC officials, however, argued that decision was purely based on safety, not politics.

"We were concerned about capacity on the high end for Thursday, not on the low end," one official said, adding they had 19,000 people on the wait list for the stadium.

In an interview with a local TV station in Virginia, conducted before the venue change was announced, Obama said he's more focused on his message than capacity concerns at the DNC.

"My main goal is not to worry about the logistics of the convention," Obama said. "My main goal, I think, is to communicate to the American people how we can move forward."

CNN's Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

soundoff (183 Responses)
  1. demwit

    But.., but, I have two of the 65,000 stadium tickets. What am I suppose to do!? What about my fair share!!??

    September 5, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  2. Wjeanj

    With the move, what will happen to ticket holers.

    September 5, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  3. Pau christ

    depending on the weather person again is a sad decision. Not a good decision.

    September 5, 2012 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  4. CNN_Troll

    I've heard GOP fans say it was because of lack of ticket holders. But, I'd respond that at least the DNC didn't have to cut a day off because they did not have 4 days worth of ideas, and that includes talking to an empty chair and guaranteeing employment for fact checkers.

    September 5, 2012 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  5. Steve- Illinois

    They had to move it indoors because they didn't want Obama speaking to a stadium that looked empty!

    September 5, 2012 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  6. Realtrue

    Please
    The word the last two weeks has been that they were not even close to making the place look full. The weather is just an excuse.

    September 5, 2012 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  7. Will

    Hilarious. The forecast is a low 40% chance. Methinks a half empty stadium is the deciding factor with weather an easy excuse.

    September 5, 2012 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  8. WiredweirdinSF

    The DNC has been such a media love fest, proving once again the hypocrisy and lying that is so much a part of the democrat liberal foundation. None of the liberal media asks any questions, one very minor fact check from the CNN liberal Fact Checker none from any of the other media who were parsing the words of every Republican last week. Thank you NEA, your dumbing down of the American people to make sure they are democrat liberals is working.

    September 5, 2012 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  9. Mike Biddle

    @Wjeanj don't assume there were really enough tickets holders.

    September 5, 2012 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  10. Mike Biddle

    @Wjeanj I wouldn't assume there were 60,000+ tickets holders.

    September 5, 2012 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  11. THE truth

    Hmmm... I guess they couldn't round up enough welfare mothers in time to fill the stadium? Lord knows there are plenty of them around in obamaville.

    September 5, 2012 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  12. DJ

    Steve- Illinois,
    You are spot on and absolutely correct!

    September 5, 2012 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  13. Big George in Big D

    Awww – did little Obozo's parade get rained on? Too bad!

    September 5, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  14. News Commentator

    There is a 40% chance of rain - and a 100% chance of President Obama being re-elected.

    September 5, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  15. Benjamin

    We've heard it a thousand times . . . hope, change, yada yada yada.

    September 5, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  16. mikey

    They could not fill the stadium even by busing in the college kids looking for free contraception and union folk looking for government handouts.

    September 5, 2012 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  17. Donkey Party

    Wiredweird – Stop the whining already, it's getting old. The Fact Checkers had an easy night because the DNC uses the truth, as opposed to the GOP who abuse the truth.

    September 5, 2012 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  18. Greg

    Look at all the trolls chearing. LOL Looks like emocrats are suddenly much better at organizing that GOP. And even if not enough tickets were sold (very unlikely), it looks like Democrats would not allow even one empty chair to make fun of their convention. GOPers are too dumb to see it.

    September 5, 2012 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  19. crabman2

    Steve-Illinois , I was going to say the same thing ,,you beat me to it . Too true .

    September 5, 2012 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  20. Tom

    Typical of the Democrats – bait n switch

    September 5, 2012 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  21. Fact Check

    Obama has been unable to fill large rooms all election so his campaing saw the writing on the wall and dramatically reduced the size of the venue. Will all those people Obama had planned to bus in from South Carolina still get a free ride to Charlotte?

    September 5, 2012 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  22. us_1776

    Good move.

    It's gonna be pouring rain that night.

    .

    September 5, 2012 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  23. KorryS

    It means TOO MANY EMPTY SEATS people!

    September 5, 2012 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  24. thelms

    Yea right – they have given out 65,000 plus tickets. I'v e been trying to get two tickets for a while now, live in Charlotte, and am able to go; however, I have been unable to get them!!

    September 5, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  25. The REAL Truth...

    Other than the right wing haters, who really cares what the reason is. This years DNC has no meaning – the nominee is a foregone conclusion. It's lip service to the Dem party. Other than the economic benefit to the host city, not even sure why they are holding it.. all it does is give the hating right an opportunity to print more hate.

    September 5, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
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