October 29th, 2010
09:42 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama’s first House stop

(CNN) - One of the country’s most vulnerable House Democrats received some help Friday night from the campaigner in chief.

Freshman Democratic Rep. Tom Perriello is fighting to hold onto his Virginia seat in a heavily conservative district, and in a very cold pavilion the president made his case to Virginia’s 5th district.

“I’m not here because Tom votes with me on every issue. Sometimes he disagrees with me,” President Obama said. “I know his allegiance is not to party labels... it’s to the people of this district and the people of Virginia.”

He told the crowd that courage is hard to come by, and it is something Perriello showed in his first term in office.

Perriello voted in support of much of Obama’s agenda, including stimulus, health care reform and cap and trade legislation. Although he broke with the White House on gun control and the bailout, Friday’s visit seemed to be a thank you to the politician whose political future is in jeopardy. It also marked the first presidential campaign stop for a House candidate.

“The question I have for you is when somebody like this has your back, do you have his back?,” Obama told the crowd.

At the end of the president’s speech, he put his arm around Perriello and in his ear said, “Go win this thing,” Perriello told reporters after the event.

Perriello, who only won in 2008 by 727 votes, is now facing Virginia state senator Robert Hurt in the November election.

Obama also took the opportunity to remind voters of the 2008 election, but to keep the message of "change" in perspective.

“2008 wasn’t the end goal. It wasn’t just to put a president in, it wasn’t just to put Tom in, it was to keep building a movement for change,” Obama said. “And if everybody who fought for change in 2008 shows up in 2010, then we will win this election.”

–CNN's Shawna Shepherd and Ed Henry contributed to this report

Filed under: 2010 • issues • President Obama • Tom Perriello • Virginia
soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Lib Hunter

    Only hours after another attempted terrorist attack from the "religion of peace" and Imam Obam is quickly back on the campaign trail. This guy is a clown. Hell, CNN even calls him the campaigner and chief. Obama and his merry band of radicals are in for the biggest refudiation in the history of politics. NOV 2 on it's way Libs. TICK TOCK LIBS TICK TOCK

    October 29, 2010 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  2. Snow

    Perriello is a water carrier for obama and the rest of the liberals. Stick a fork in him, he will be voted out very easily this November.

    October 29, 2010 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  3. George of the jungle

    Hopefully Virginia will use common sense. Vote the repos out we can do it if all you democrats get out and vote. WE do need change and we have not seen any from the repos. with idiots like Palin and odonnal what do you think will happen to this country. Vote the repos out. Go to the polls and vote. It sure would be a surprize to the repos .

    October 30, 2010 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  4. barry

    Perriello is history this year. Obama will be history next year. The American voters will speak on Tuesday of next week. The Left wing agenda doesn't work for this country. The majority of the US is Center right. The Chicago style liberal corrupt agenda doesn't represent the majority of the US. Bye Bye Perriello but don't get too upset many many of your Dem thugs will join you in the unemployment as well.

    October 30, 2010 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  5. Marry

    Tom Perriello is a representative that truly has the interest of the people at heart. He is the kind of man we so desperately need! He is man with a good character to go against all that craziness and misinformation to make good things happening for us all. He stands for modernizing the US and work that offers a better future for all Americans. He stands for solutions to solve problems – not for denying them.
    My dear friends, please, go out and vote. Here, you have a good choice that is well worth your support!

    October 30, 2010 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  6. jules sand-perkins

    Obama said that if everybody who fought for change in 2008 showed up in 2010 "we" (he and Democrats) would win the election?
    Obama is deluded!
    Many who fought for change in 2008 did not get the change Obama promised. That's why they WILL show up in 2010 and vote for Republicans–and specifically against Obama and anything related to him.

    October 30, 2010 08:14 am at 8:14 am |