DETROIT – Former President Barack Obama made his case for the Michigan Democratic ticket in front of a packed gymnasium in Detroit on Saturday as races across the state come down to the wire.
Obama made a stop at Detroit’s Renaissance High School on a limited national tour to support Democrats in key battleground states; Michigan, Wisconsin, and Georgia.
“The thing is, we can’t give in to the temptation to give up. We can’t turn inward. We can’t see politics as a zero-sum game where anything goes,” Obama said.
The rally for a standing-room-only crowd was meant to get Democratic voters to turn out to vote. The former President played heavily on abortion and voting rights. Both were issues that were animating factors over the summer, but have fallen slightly from the front of voters’ minds as inflation has been on the rise.
“The most personal of health choices should be between a woman and her doctor, not politicians,” Obama said. “Here in Michigan, this isn’t even theoretical, abortion rights are literally on the ballot.”
In response to the visit, MIGOP spokesperson Gustavo Portela said in a statement, “Gretchen Whitmer’s desperation is showing as she brings in establishment reinforcements to campaign with her ahead of Election Day . . . Barack Obama’s presence in Michigan does not signal what she thinks it does.”
Obama’s visit comes as the races in Michigan have begun to tighten with Election Day just over a week away.
Recent polling averages have the race for governor in favor of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer by three points, down from her double-digit lead at the end of the summer.
Races crucial for Democrats to maintain control of Congress from across the state, including seats in Metro Detroit, are also on the line
The former President only mentioned GOP gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon by name once, while talking about a recent video of a June 2020 monologue from her show on a Conservative online news outlet. In the video, Dixon claimed Democrats wanted to “topple the U.S.” for revenge for losing the civil war. Historians and fact-checkers have pushed back on her comments.
In response Dixon said:
At the high school, Obama left a cheering crowd with a directive with just 10 days to the election.
“Let’s get to work! Thank you, Detroit! Thank you, Michigan! I love you! Let’s go do it!”