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Gotta Vote Bus Tour
  • Fonzworth Bentley tells North Carolina: Get five people to vote

    Fonzworth Bentley has a book, a record, and a TV show. He's worked with Diddy and some of the biggest names in hip-hop. Even with such a colorful career—and closet—he says getting out the vote for President Obama is one of the most important things he's done. This week, he's on the Gotta Vote bus in North Carolina—familiar campaign stomping grounds.

    Fonzworth Bentley has a book, a record, and a TV show. He's worked with Diddy and some of the biggest names in hip-hop. Even with such a colorful career—and closet—he says getting out the vote for President Obama is one of the most important things he's done. This week, he's on the Gotta Vote bus in North Carolina—familiar campaign stomping grounds:

    "Four years ago, I was in the trenches right here in North Carolina. I was cutting turf. I saw the difference a knock makes. I saw the difference leaving a voicemail makes. Eight years ago, this wasn't a battleground. Today, the color of this state has changed—red to blue—and that's because of you.

    "Vote.barackobama.com. I need you to Facebook it, text it, tweet it, Instagram it—whatever you got. In 2008, we won by 14,000 votes in North Carolina. That breaks down to five votes per precinct. So you need to not only vote—you gotta get in touch with five more people and make sure they vote too. This is serious. This is real. But I am confident—because I believe in you."

    Commit to vote

  • “We need President Obama”

    Kevin, the owner of Trimmerz, a barber shop in Fayetteville, North Carolina, says Barack Obama gets it. ''I’m supporting President Obama because everybody needs somebody who they can look at and say, ‘This person might just have what it takes to look out for me.''

    Kevin, the owner of Trimmerz, a barber shop in Fayetteville, North Carolina, says Barack Obama gets it.

    “I’m supporting President Obama because everybody needs somebody who they can look at and say, ‘This person might just have what it takes to look out for me. I see that all the time with my small business. I run into people with all their health problems. They can’t afford their health problems, they can’t afford to get the help they need. That’s why we need President Obama. He understands what life is like for everyday people.”

    Kevin is doing his part to get out the vote by registering voters—but not just because there’s a presidential election coming up and North Carolina’s a critical swing state. He says people can register to vote at his barber shop, with Obama posters and photos on the walls, “every year, all year.” Kevin wants his customers to be engaged in their community, to care about smaller races for the mayoralty, the board of elections, the city council. But this year’s presidential election really does fire him up.

    “I’m just excited,” he says. “You have to have something to believe in, something you want to pass on to generation after generation after generation. And I think this is the best force for us to do that.”

    Gotta Vote

  • Debbie Wasserman Schultz: Women can’t afford Mitt Romney

    Polls are officially open in North Carolina. At Gotta Vote bus stops at Wilson and Greenville this afternoon, our chair, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, let the women of North Carolina, know just how much is at stake for their family's bottom line.

    Polls are officially open in North Carolina. At Gotta Vote bus stops at Wilson and Greenville this afternoon, our chair, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, let the women of North Carolina, know just how much is at stake for their family's bottom line.

    "Mitt Romney still can't give women a straight answer on where he stands on the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Simple question: If you were president, would you have signed it? But he won't answer. The President, we know, that was the first bill he signed into law. He understands.

    "The other night, President Obama talked about the crucial role that women play as breadwinners in American families. And Mitt Romney talked about us as resumes in a binder. Do you feel like a resume in a binder? I know I'm not. I also know that I don't need a president who thinks the only reason I need help balancing work and family is so I can rush home and cook dinner for my husband. Women are so much more than that.

    "President Obama has clearly showed us he understands that we are so often the breadwinners in our family, the heads of our households, the key to the economic success of families all across this country. The fact is, women only earn 77 cents for every dollar a man makes for doing the same work. That costs the typical woman $431,000 over the course of her career. That is real money in North Carolina, and it's real money in Weston, Florida, where I'm from. And I refuse to accept that for my two daughters, who are 13 and 9 years old. Because like President Obama's daughters, we want to make sure that their future is as bright as possible."

    Women for Obama, you gotta vote.

  • Ron Kirk: “This is our preseason”

    Today is the first day of early voting in North Carolina, and the Hon. Ron Kirk joined the Gotta Vote bus in Raleigh on the campus of North Carolina State University. Before students marched to their early vote location to cast their ballots, Kirk offered them a little pep talk.

    Today is the first day of early voting in North Carolina, and the Hon. Ron Kirk joined the Gotta Vote bus in Raleigh on the campus of North Carolina State University. Before students marched to their early vote location to cast their ballots, Kirk offered them a little pep talk:

    "I read a poll that I think NC State is picked No. 1 in the coaches poll for ACC basketball. Now, I'm a huge college basketball fan, but I'm a big enough fan to know you don't win a national championship by polls. You don't win a national championship by just showing up for your first game in November and December. You win by the work you put in now—running those laps, doing those drills.

    "Election Day is not just November 6—Election Day is today here in North Carolina. The way we win elections now is by voting early. This is our preseason. This is our training camp. Every early vote is money in the bank for us, and you have time to make sure your friends and neighbors know."

    Early voting has begun in several states across the country. Find out when and where you can cast your ballot at GottaVote.com.

  • Valerie Jarrett on Mitt Romney’s backward policies for women

    Today, Jarrett joined the Gotta Vote bus tour in Greensboro, North Carolina, and spoke about the clear contrast between a candidate whose answer to an equal pay question was "binders full of women" and a President whose first piece of legislation helped women fight pay discrimination.

    Valerie Jarrett was in Hempstead, New York, at last night's debate—giving her a front-row seat to Mitt Romney's disastrous answers on women's issues.

    Today, Jarrett joined the Gotta Vote bus tour in Greensboro, North Carolina, and spoke about the clear contrast between a candidate whose answer to an equal pay question was "binders full of women" and a President whose first piece of legislation helped women fight pay discrimination:

    "Do you know what he thinks about every morning, in addition to you? His daughters. As he said last night, he wants them to grow up [with the same opportunities as our sons], which is why the first bill he signed was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act—equal pay for equal work.

    "Twice we tried to get additional legislation passed through the Congress: the Paycheck Fairness Act. Not a single Republican voted for that, and it would've given women more teeth to go after employers who aren't paying them fairly.

    "You know the other thing the president was clear on last night: He believes a woman should be able to choose what to do with her own body"My mother, who's 83, was talking to my daughter, who's 26. My mother said, "I can't believe you might have to fight the same battles I fought decades ago. That's not right. That's going backward." Romney's economic plan goes backward, his social policies go backward. He's backward. Which way are we? Forward. Which way are we going to go? Forward."

    Help us move forward.

  • North Carolina reacts to the debate

    It's pretty clear to these North Carolinians who won the debate last night.

    Janet from Winston-Salem:

    "President Obama was so engaged. He made good points about health care, especially points about women's issues. Mitt Romney's not really for women's issues. His explanation of his stance on equal pay was so bizarre—and the one thing that stuck out for me was how he said he understood it because he had a woman who had to leave early to make dinner for her kids. I thought, he just doesn't get it at all."

    Tony from High Point:

    "Last night, Barack Obama was the president we elected in '08—the president who will continue to do the job from 2012–2016. The President stood toe to toe with Romney and spoke about that 47 percent. There's an old passage, what you do in the dark will come to light. Romney spoke something behind closed doors that was the true heart of the man. Then, in public, he says something else. You cannot trust a guy like that. The President has been consistent. It's a tough job, but he's done well."

    Dan from Winston-Salem:

    "President Obama did a great job last night. I watched it all. The moment when Romney tried and failed to nail him on his comment [on Libya] in the Rose Garden was priceless. To me, it showed how Romney comes across as hard and uncaring and Obama comes across as caring for the people."

    Jo from High Point:

    "President Obama did excellent. He showed he's presidential, but he got Romney on Libya, he got him on immigration, he got him on health care. He showed Romney for who he is: someone who tells everyone what they want to hear and then lets his surrogates walk it back. That is not what a candidate for president is supposed to do."

    Ellen from Winston-Salem:

    "Romney was flustered last night. The President was much more clear. He just stated his case so much more succinctly, especially on women's issues. Romney's been back and forth—women can't trust him. I think we have to go with someone who's actually done what's in our best interest."

  • Three generations of Charlotteans for Obama

    With exactly three weeks till Election Day, three generations of Charlotte politicos—Mayor Anthony Foxx, former Mayor Harvey Gantt, and Reggie Love—are firing up their home city for the home stretch of this election.

    With exactly three weeks till Election Day, three generations of Charlotte politicos—Mayor Anthony Foxx, former Mayor Harvey Gantt, and Reggie Love—are firing up their home city for the home stretch of this election.

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  • Working till the last minute

    Four years ago, Virginia did something they hadn't done in 44 years: They voted for a Democrat—Barack Obama—for President. And it happened because an unprecedented three in four voters made it to the polls on Election Day.

    Four years ago, Virginia did something they hadn't done in 44 years: They voted for a Democrat—Barack Obama—for President. And it happened because an unprecedented three in four voters made it to the polls on Election Day.

    As Brian Moran, the chair of the Democratic Party of Virginia says, when Virginians vote, Democrats win.

    That made today's Virginia voter registration deadline critical—marching orders the Blacksburg OFA office took to heart. As of today's 5 p.m. deadline, their team of organizers and volunteers collected and submitted around 5,000 voter registration forms from the Virginia Tech community, including a few last-minute ones that organizers dropped off at the county auditor's office (pictured above) with just minutes to spare.

    Gotta Vote

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