January 20th, 2008
02:10 PM ET
15 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. Dog Lover

    Usher? Obama should have Dog The Bounty Hunter speak for him

    January 20, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  2. Robin Wagner from ct

    Hillary with her crying thing , she didnt cry when she voted for this war .

    January 20, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  3. Kitty

    oh no...now will he drag out Opray again? this is a presidential election..not American Idol or Dancing with the Stars.....

    January 20, 2008 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  4. Greg OH

    Mariann Pepitone,

    Lets see proof of anything you said? Why can't he win any of those states. Doesn't have the intelligence ? He went to Harvard Law and was Suma Cume Lade while being the editor of the Harvard Law Review (top law review in the country). Oh yes not the intelligence. You have not credibility when you don't use any facts. BC he is black, come on now, I won't even dignify that with a response. Being the first lady is not experience. Hillary should take the same route that Eleanor Roosevelt took. She was asked by Truman to be his VP and was asked to run for President after FDR died, but she said no because she didn't feel being a first lady qualified her to be president.

    January 20, 2008 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  5. Michel Westchester NY

    I am sorry Obama is running for president. I wish he could just bow out gracefully.
    Originally I thought America had changed and a black man had a chance to become president in my lifetime but I know better now. It will be a cold day in Hell before any black person can be elected president.

    I am very disappointed with the way Hillary Clinton has turned this issue into a racial issue for her own personal gain. I don't think she will get away with it because God does not like ugly and Hillary is ugly in every way. I believe God will show us the way.

    I am from a family of "Yeller Dog Democrats" from Texas and I have never sat out an election but I will NEVER vote for Hillary Clinton. NEVER. I voted for Bill Clinton twice and I urged my friends and relatives to vote for Hillary Clinton in the New York Senatorial election. I would give almost anything to retract those votes. It won't happen again.

    I hope Mike Huckabee or John McCain will kick her big butt in the general election.
    I can just see the likes of Laura Ingraham, Ann Coulter, Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, Karl Rove, and the rest of the Fox gang going after Madam Clinton. They are going to force her to open up those papers she has been hiding from the public.


    January 20, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  6. JohnS

    Mariann Peptone writes:
    "Jeny 26: Where did you ever get the idea that Obama wants to bring unity. Since when? He's only interested in the presidency because he's part black and he wants to make history in America. Let him go back to Kenya and make history. He will not be president of this country because he will not win the nomination. I stated that Obama would not win Nevada, Texas, Airzona and California. If he wins in South Carolina he should be happy because he's not going to win too many more. Obama doesn't have the capabilities to run this country. It takes good intelligence and experience and he has neither. He shouldn't have been running in the first place. He hasn't been a senator long enough to become president. but he wants to make history badly. Too bad because it will not be."

    Mariann, are you a student? How many of your "learned professors" are from other nations? See, that is the problem; learned people know better than tell anyone to go back to her/his native country. As a college professor, my experience tells me that the universities in the US will go down hill very fast, if your wish were to come true!!! So, please do not let foreign professors reading these types of posts turn their red inks against Caucasians in this country because of your narrow-mindedness!!!!

    January 20, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  7. veronica

    Barack Obama is a very divisive figure. Although I have never cast my vote for a Republican, if Obama wins this nomination, I will vote for Mr. McCain.

    January 20, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  8. Viki

    To holly: Obama didn’t give speech for his supporters. He hides behind statement that was issued by his campaign. I was surprise too. It is arrogance or ignorance.
    He is anxious to do well in SC.

    Don’t think so.
    Hillary for president!

    January 20, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  9. Jim

    I wouldn't have thought this election could have been lost by the Democrats. Yet here they go. For the Democrats it must be either a black man, or a woman.
    Why? Why now? Why not a woman or black vice-president to start with, maybe we could still win with that and then lead into a black or female or a black female president. I don't care what race or gender our president is as long as they can get the enormous problems they will face under control. I don't believe the Republicans will solve those problems; they will probably create more. I believe they are all for business and wealth. Maybe we are too. I don't know for sure.
    I do knowTHIS election is too important to use for a social statement. If we don't start handling our government in a way consistent with common sense we will soon be past the point of no return in a lot of areas. Water shortages even in rain rich areas, a dollar that won't be accepted to pay for the oil we refuse to replace with domestic renewable fuels, a military that is being stretched beyond the breaking point,, social security being sucked dry, medical expenses that cost us so much we have to do without. SOMEBODY BETTER DO SOMETHING. Trying to force a female or a minority at this point in time? I think it is a gift to the Republicans.
    No, we need someone we can really elect. We don't need to put a woman or a minority up against the Republican's unless we are willing to accept another four years of business deals instead of real government for the good of the people.

    January 20, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  10. Eric in Massachusetts

    For a race that is not about race, Baracka Hussein Obama and his supporters sure seem to keep throwing it right in everyone's face, don't they? I've never seen more people blindly support someone just because of some appearance trait. Crazy.

    January 20, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  11. Bob, Florida - RFO

    Mariann Pepitone January 20, 2008 7:56 pm ET

    Not sure about your comments nor your skills to present actual argument as to the qualifications of Barack Obama.

    As you used the internet to add your comments to this blog I suggest you take some additional time to research some facts in depth.

    But the first task you should do is lookup the definition of Oligarchy.

    Go Barack '08

    January 20, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  12. janegrey

    It just seems to me if the Dems are more interested in the primaries and not the presidency. I a life time Republican raised my hand for Obama in Iowa, and it would be my pleasure to vote for him to become Pres. I would never vote for Clinton.

    My sons who will be voting in their first pres election have supported Obama, they have also said they would never vote for Clinton. I don't understand, do the Clinton's think that all the new people Obama has brought into the Dem party will just vote for her if Obama doesnt make it? You forget that McCain is a good choice and we can always hope that Bloomberg runs if Hilary wins the nomination, that way at least I will have a choice of people to choice from when voting against Hilary.

    January 20, 2008 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  13. Patty


    January 20, 2008 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  14. whitney

    I think that if Obama wins i want to move. Obama doesn't have near enough experience to be president. i know some people say it shouldn't matter but it does. Obama thinks that Oprah and Usher will help him good for him. to those who vote for him because of this is stupid!!

    January 20, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  15. Bob, Florida - RFO

    This is a great country the deserves great leadership! We don't need nor should we continue to be lead by the American Royal family!

    ABC '08

    January 20, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  16. Hank

    I watched utube and I could not help it. I have to admitt, I could not help it.

    January 20, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  17. constant

    I agree with "the experience" of Hillary. Her experience has been as a "wife". Period. She has been a senator of a state she did not live in. The big politcal machine got her in. She is no better than bush. I was around for the Bill show. She made comments about "standing by her man". Give me a break! That shows weakness. If she is so strong, and smart why didn't she break out on her own, and make her own way after being humiliated in front of the whole world! I wonder if she says.... no matter what Chelsea..stand by your man, never stand up for yourself, be your own woman, own your life, just stand by your man no matter what he does!! Not a lesson I want my daughter to learn!!
    If hillary wins it will be payback time for the Republicans. She will be worse than Bush ever thought of being. We need a President with a clear mind, and a clean slate, she has neither! We don't need more of the same political BS now, we are in trouble not just here but internationally!! She will be more of the same. All Republicans hate her, and they want nothing more than to have her win the Dem. nomination, they will eat her alive with her "experience"! If she wins the Dems nod, you can kiss the Presidency good bye!
    Reading a comment like send Obama back to Kenya, is like telling Hillary to drag her barefeet back in the kitchen! Wake up! Wake up! Bigotry is out of fashion...it's 2008!
    AGE and political EXPERIENCE does not equal INTELLIGENCE!

    January 20, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  18. tom

    wow bush took care of five blacks by putting them in his cabinet.........i guess thats better than helping thousands of low income and unemployed blacks..........and by the weay who are the real rascists nowadays....this message is brought to you by caucasians against rascism...please give to the united caucasian college fund....thanx!

    January 20, 2008 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  19. Educated and versed

    Are you sure you weren't born in the antbellum south? You are a racist, plain and simple. You have so much hatred in you that you cannot even conceal it in your conversation or your posts. If I vote for Obama it will be because I have researched his voting patterns, I am familiar with his community service and his record as a Senator. I wish all of you, black or white would let go of this racist nonsense. It is the one thing that has caused this country to fall so far behind other countries both in education and global trends. I travel all over the world with my work, and not until the last 10 years have I ever been ashamed to be an American. This whole country will be brown in years to come. Then who will you and your racist kind hate? Either of the top 3 candidates may make good presidents, their records suggest that. Let's move past this ignorant, uneducated nonsense and do what we need to do to save this country as one people.

    January 20, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    WHO CARES????????????
    I can't stand Usher and I DON'T CARE!!!!
    This article wasn't worth writing

    January 20, 2008 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  21. Clinton

    Clinton is Old, she is antiquated and her generation is responsible for everything wrong with this country. The old people are fighting the inevitable...becoming marginalized. Please step aside and let the people who are actually in touch with this world lead.

    January 20, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  22. Tom Davie

    Hey markus

    a WHOLE PILE of Super delegates have to ANSWER to those Latinos.

    obama losing the latino vote by such a HUGE margain kissed his chances at a bunch of Latino based super delegates and endorsements goodbye.

    This is the point.

    January 20, 2008 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  23. C

    It will be scary to see Hillary in the white house!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let me say this again and I repeat SCARY!!! She changes her views accoring to public opinion. First she was for the WAR all the way. Strong for it!! Then when she saw public opinion oppossed it she went against it. She has been wishy washy in alot of her decisions and views. She does not seem to have a mind of her own. She says what the public want to hear. That is SCARY to have an unstable person in the office. If Obama does not win I rather have John Mc Cain (Republican) than a democrat president.

    Democrat from the West 🙂

    January 20, 2008 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  24. chris

    Time for Obama to start calling out the Clintons for what they are. It's outrageous that an impeached former president who brought shame on the office of president is allowed to get away with his thinly veiled racist attacks. Come on America wake up! The Clintons will do anything and say anything to get back into the White House. Obama provides a chance for us to change this country – Clintons will bring more of the same. They are both morallly bankrupt and cannot be allowed to dupe us again.

    January 20, 2008 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  25. Marian

    Beyond semantics, Americans have enough in their recent history to teach them that their leaders use words to stifle criticism. Like, "If you are not for me, you are for the terrorists," by Mr. Bush.

    If you take note of the chronology of the exchanges between Clinton and Obama, it is clear it was Obama that used racism first, at that time reacting to an unrelated statement by Mr. Clinton. Couple these with reports of clamping down comments to the press by his own people, it is pretty obvious that Obama the candidate will use the racism card to spare him from scrutiny. It seems even the media are wary of criticizing him when it is obvious he can't tackle real government issues. Like, "If you are against me, you are racist and anything you say against me is."

    People easily talk of the Clinton communication machinery. I observed that this went into force at a time when partisan politics sought to destroy Mr.Clinton's person, never what would happen to the country. He survived and he left Mr. Bush with some surplus to squander.

    By spin tactics using race, Obama the candidate is squandering the chance for America to get out of the rut Mr. Bush has put it.

    January 20, 2008 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
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