Obama tells supporters venue change is 'disappointing'
September 6th, 2012
02:25 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama tells supporters venue change is 'disappointing'

(CNN) - President Barack Obama told supporters on Thursday he regretted that some 65,000 of them would be unable to watch his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention that evening, and urged them to continue to stay engaged in his reelection effort.

"I want to begin by saying how much I regret that we're not all gathering together in one place to deliver my acceptance speech tonight," Obama told supporters on a conference call which the campaign organized after weather canceled plans for Obama to accept his party's nomination at the Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Instead, Obama will deliver his remarks at the Time Warner Cable Arena, which has housed the other major convention events. The call was announced Wednesday morning as thunderstorms and heavy rain loomed in Thursday's forecast. Convention organizers said they had distributed some 65,000 tickets for Thursday evening's events, which was to include speeches by Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and live music.

Those with the so called "community credentials" will not be able to attend the convention in person due to space concerns, although delegates and other guests will be allowed in. On Wednesday evening, as both he and former President Bill Clinton were in the hall, security officials for the event closed the hall saying it had reached capacity.

On the conference call, Obama acknowledged that the move was "disappointing" and spoke about the safety concerns which organizers said prompted the location change.

"I could not ask you, our volunteers, law enforcement, first responders, to subject themselves to the risk of severe thunderstorms," Obama said, adding that "getting 70,000 people into a place is tough, getting them out of there is even tougher, and if we had started seeing severe thunderstorms and lightning in particular it would have been a problem and we would have had a situation where we were putting you guys at risk."

Obama acknowledged that many supporters who were given "community credentials" to the event were volunteers who had been given the tickets in exchange for volunteering with his campaign, "I know they've been working nonstop for months."

He said the campaign would "do everything we can to get you into events taking place near you, and our staffs are going to be in touch with you about that so hopefully you'll have an even closer front row seat to the campaign, which won't be hard to do since you're part of the campaign."

The president gave few clues as to what would be in his acceptance speech, except to say that he was "looking forward to laying out what are the stakes in this election, what my vision for the future is," He also said that his campaign has "offered a clear contrast to what people saw in Tampa," where Republicans held their convention last week.

He praised the earlier speeches of his wife, first lady Michelle Obama, and Clinton, whom he said "broke down the issues as effectively as anybody could."

In 2008, Obama also held the final day of his convention in a larger venue, the Invesco Field stadium in Denver, Colorado, and his campaign told reporters on Wednesday that they saw inviting thousands of supporters to see the president's speech in person as a grassroots organizing tool.

soundoff (121 Responses)
  1. Red in the blue

    Disappointing! That describes Obama's entire 4 years.

    September 6, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  2. Blaah

    Bank of America Stadium....

    I think that explains it.

    September 6, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  3. Hammerer

    Dems really know how to put on a convention! Don't they?
    Same way they run the government. No clue!

    September 6, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  4. DocReality

    Is it "disappointing" for America? Probably not. "Disappointing" for Baba's ego? You bet.

    September 6, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. Joi Gibson

    It's okay Mr. President. We will be watching and cheering you on. All you naysayers, tisk, tisk. That stadium would have been filled to maximum capacity.


    September 6, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  6. myviewis

    Wow. TWO black people. Bravo. Did you see our convention? It looked like the United Nations.

    Yes, some of my black relatives were there.

    September 6, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  7. DENNA

    Lambchop: Go throw yourself on a grill. The president's staffers are on top of any nonsense the GOP will throw at them.

    September 6, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  8. Dominican mama 4 Obama


    Don't you people have any other black people besides Condi Rice?

    Yes, ex-Democrat Congressman Artur Davis
    The question remains unanswered if that's your answer.

    September 6, 2012 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  9. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    ...And if you throw in Herman Cain we'll ask you to please SPIN AGAIN! lol!

    September 6, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  10. "When you walk through the door of opportunity, you do not close it, you reach behind you and help someone else" Michelle O!

    Well, it is already safe to say folks will be discussing the DNC tomorrow, and it will not be, because some senile fool was mumbling about how he wished he could sit in the chair, but he couldn't because he was "packing a load" in his Depends!

    September 6, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  11. JT

    I was on that call. He was very gracious and understood the disappointment. But, he was also excited to address the nation tonight. We've still got his back!

    September 6, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  12. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I could not ask you, our volunteers, law enforcement, first responders, to subject themselves to the risk of severe thunderstorms," Obama said
    I guess you have to play your part and keep up a "dailogue" with these choked-with-hate-and-envy mental midget bullies Mr. President, but the fact of the matter is that if you HAD proceeded with the event at the stadium you would've been CRUCIFIED by the GOP for exposing said staffers, volunteers et al to "dangerous weather conditions".
    They would've claimed that your ego superseded what should've been your main concern, the safety of Amerikun citishuns. Blah, blah, blah. But since you're a compassionate, proactive, common-sensical man and you changed the venue they are now claiming that you did it because you couldn't find enough people to attend. Yada, yada, yada.
    We know their narrative, and played-out game book. We've been listening to their crap for almost four years. It's tired, and we're tired of it....and them!
    Obama 2012. Serioulsy America.

    September 6, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  13. Btie

    Donโ€™t Republicans have anything else to say besides attacking Obama? It is just becomes so funny that they just don't have nothing to stay except telling voters how bad Obama is for the country. We got eyes, ears and brains. Jeez!!! What a bunch of losers!

    September 6, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  14. Luke Brown

    I wish Romney had actually proposed some solid ideas for moving our country forward. When only one candidate has any substance, it's not really a contest.

    Hey Mitt, exactly how are you going to create those 12 million jobs? Oh, yeah, you never said.

    September 6, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  15. "When you walk through the door of opportunity, you do not close it, you reach behind you and help someone else" Michelle O!

    Why is the GOP all about optics?

    How many folks are in the stadium is not the issue, how many votes he wins from ALL mediums is the priority.

    However, the obsession with optics, does explain the aging beauty con with a nice rack choice to lead the country,

    September 6, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  16. The REAL Truth...

    @Tricia – Obama couldn't fill a stadium if he tried! His glory days are over.
    Glad to see you got that off your chest girl! Had you all tied up in knots, eh? What a dilemma!
    The right missed the part where the stadium event was already sold out and about 20,000 DIDN'T GET TICKETS as a result. You/they also missed the FACT that the buses are being used to ease traffic congestion around the stadium, not bring in FORCED attendees. It must really hurt to be a Repuglican right now. Watching the lies, deceit and misinformation from the RNC circus of Mitt the Twit, Lyan Ryan and a once-iconized, aging move star talking nonsense to a chair! LOL. Compare that to the lambasting Clinton gave the opposition and the FORWARD movement at the DNC... The GOP has no viable policies or candidates and no chance in Nov. Obama is going to tear Willard to pieces in the debates.. here's some of the material he might use on the Twit!:
    – 4.3 million jobs saved (of 4.4 million Bush LOST);
    – Immigration Executive Order, Amnesty to Immigrants since Congress has refused to act on the matter for nearly 4 years;
    – Cut taxes for 160m Americans;
    – Wall street reform passed;
    – 18 new tax cuts for small businesses;
    – Unfair credit card fees eliminated;
    – 466,000 new manufacturing jobs;
    – $1 T in spending cuts;
    – Protected Reproduction Rights;
    – Stem Cell Research funded;
    – Efficiency Standards Doubling;
    – U.S. Oil Production at 8-year high;
    – Natural Gas Production at all-time high;
    – Renewable energy production up 27%;
    – First Latina supreme court justice appointed;
    – $100 billion invested in science and research;
    – Iraq War Ended;
    – Afghanistan War ends 2014 and all troops return home;
    – Libya Liberated;
    – Osama Bin Laden Dead;
    – Incentive to Hire Unemployed Veterans;
    – Don't Ask Don't Tell Ended;
    – Unemployment Benefits Extended;
    – Equal Pay for Women Protected;
    – Health Care Reform Passed;
    – Seniors' Drug Costs Lowered;
    – College Pell Grants Doubled;
    – Guaranteed Coverage for Contraception;
    – Medicare and Soc Sec Protected, and finally,
    – Auto Industry Saved

    September 6, 2012 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  17. DENNA

    Romney is playing his version of "jobs, jobs, jobs" that we got from Boehner and company when they tricked America into voting them into power. That day in November 2010 was the last chance America had to progress and they threw it away on the party that dragged us down the through the briar patch in the first place. The GOP gambled that the American public was made up of enough racists that the GOP could fool them into voting against their own best interests. It worked. America, we are better than this, aren't we?

    September 6, 2012 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  18. Alice

    I agree it's does'nt matter 20,000 or 65,000 noone wants Mitt Romney to be president get it MEDIA !!

    September 6, 2012 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  19. RGD

    Aww, GOP naysayers are jealous because they lost 1 1/2 days of their convention due to Hurricane Isaac and rest of their affair looked just like any other business conference filled with empty suits and lobbyists only because their corporations require them to attend. Democratic convention has been rocking and rolling with much more diversity, entertaining speeches and unbridling enthusiasm for their president unlike GOP's corporate raider and Mr. Pinocchio who represent their wealthy buddies. President Clinton's barn burner energized Democrats so much that they will turn out to vote for Obama in large numbers this November unlike Eastwood's empty chair which somehow managed to outshine GOP's main attraction. All GOP have left is bitterness, anger and hatred which are not enough to win elections. Four more years for Obama & Biden! Hillary Clinton & Julian Castro in 2016!

    September 6, 2012 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  20. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    @ The REAL Truth...
    I detected a note of unalloyed PRIDE in your brilliant summation of our President's accomplishments (felt like some were missing in spite of the long list though!).
    And I would have to agree wholeheartedly with you Republicans have been left drooling, derailed, and deflated after last night. Tonight's speech by our President will seal their doomed fate.
    I haven't stopped smiling all day long.........
    Obama 2012. Period.

    September 6, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  21. DENNA

    @ The Real Truth: Your points are valid and the president has indeed performed well. If he wasn't a black man, his reelection would be assured. Oily Mitt and Bug-eyed Pauly scare me as I know they don't give a real darn about America. Those who vote Republican licked up every bit of rancid gravy that the Bush Administration poured. They never questioned how we could afford two wars AND tax cuts AND increases in defense. They never questioned his raising of the debt ceiling which he did. Never questioned anything. Don't you people understand math?

    September 6, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  22. DENNA

    @ myviewis

    Wow. TWO black people. Bravo. Did you see our convention? It looked like the United Nations.

    Yes, some of my black relatives were there.

    Were they hiding? You could not miss the diversity of the Democratic convention. It was impossible to miss.

    September 6, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  23. DENNA

    Did I mention that Michelle smoked Ann? She did. And Clinton smoked Clint's empty chair too.! ๐Ÿ™‚

    September 6, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  24. Ancient Texan

    Aw shucks, and they about had the lions arena finished and with a large cell of Christians and several cages of hungry Lions, the show would have been something to behold. But they couldn't convince enough folks to go through the Columns and smoke and mirrors again after being disappointed the last four years.....

    September 6, 2012 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  25. Bubba from Christian America

    You know Mr. President I could vote for you if did the following

    1. Stop spend money we dont have.
    2. Overturn the Affordable Health.
    3. Join a church
    4. get the gays out of the military
    5. promise not to raise taxes on anyone.
    6. allow social security funds to be invested in the stock market.
    7. allow states to opt out of medcaid.
    8. make the first 20 million of an estate tax free.
    9. Put an end to federal give a way programs ( food stamps. welfare, pell grants)
    10. stop the job killing regulation of business.


    September 6, 2012 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
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