Ninth time's a charm.
President Barack Obama was back in Colorado this morning, marking his ninth visit to the state this year and his third campaign stop here in just three weeks. The crowd of thousands flocking to Golden -- and the surrounding traffic jams and street closures -- served as yet another reminder that Colorado remains one of the most important swing states in the election.
But it's not about Obama. It's about the people!
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This was part of the president's message in his roughly half-hour speech, delivered in Lions Park in front of more than 8,000 supporters cheering on the president, who had the mountains behind him, forming a picturesque Colorado background.
"The power is...in your hands.... The election four years ago wasn't about me. It was about you," the president said toward the end of his speech. "You were the change. You're the ones who made it happen. You're the reason that there's a teacher and her husband in Pueblo who can help buy their first home with the help of new tax credits. You're the reason that a woman outside Durango can get the treatment she needs for breast cancer.... You're the reason seniors across Colorado are saving an average of nearly $600 every year on prescription drugs because of Obamacare. And it's true, I do care. That's why we pushed it. You care, that's why we made it happen."
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And on and on the president continued, explaining why his accomplishments -- in the areas of immigration, gay rights, bringing troops home and more -- are really their accomplishments.
"The only way America keeps moving forward is if you don't stop. You can't buy into the cynicism that the other side is selling. You can't let them convince you somehow that change is impossible," he said. "If you give up on the idea that your voice makes a difference, then other people rush in to fill the void -- the lobbyists, the special interests, the folks who are writing the ten million dollar checks to run all those negative ads, the folks who are trying to make it harder for you to vote. Washington politicians who want to decide...who you can marry and what kind of health care women should get. We can't let that happen, Colorado. That's why I need your help."
With both parties' national conventions done, Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney have entered the home stretch in the tight race and we can expect frequent visits from both candidates between now and November, including for the first national debate, on October 3 at the University of Denver.
For the Obama campaign, the effort is often very focused on registering voters and making sure those who support the president actually vote -- which conservative pundit Dick Morris said will not happen.
Obama emphasized the importance of voting today by telling people in the crowd to tell their friends and family members to vote and reminding them that he is the better choice for, well, everyone.
"We've gone too far to turn back now," the president said. "We've got more doors of opportunity to open to everybody who's willing to work hard and walk through them. Everybody! Black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, young, old, gay, straight...everybody! That's what I'm asking."
Continue reading for more from the president's speech today. Aside from some comments about the recent violence in Libya, Obama's speech sounded quite familiar to the stump speeches he has been delivering in Colorado and across the country. He was at the Auraria Events Center in the beginning of August, in Fort Collins later that month and in Boulder the first week of September. As Republicans and Team Romney keeps pushing the message that the economy sucks, that Obama is bad for small business and that no one is better off than they were four years ago, Obama's campaign continues to present the other side as one that favors the wealthy over the middle class and that is waging a war against women.
Before those attacks, the president took a brief moment in the beginning of his speech to compliment Colorado. "This is just too pretty. I don't know how you guys get any work done around here. It is spectacular today, spectacular."
Referencing a playground nearby, he added, "And I notice there's kind of like a water slide in there. I wanted to try it out. Secret Service said no."
Later, discussing the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Obama said, "The plan was one that you heard before. If we cut more taxes, everybody's gonna be okay, especially if we cut taxes at the top."
"No!" audience members shouted.
"Tax cuts in good times. Tax cuts in bad times. Tax cuts when we are at peace. Tax cuts when we are at war," Obama said. "You need to make a restaurant reservation? You don't need the new iPhone. Here's a tax cut for that. Want to learn a new language? Try a tax cut. Tax cuts...lose a few extra pounds," he said, laughing.
"I've cut taxes," he said, "for folks who need it -- middle class families, small business owners."
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Echoing a refrain that both presidential candidates and their surrogates seem to repeat at every local rally, Obama ended his speech saying that as Colorado goes, so goes the rest of the nation.
"If you're willing to work with me and knock on some doors with me and make some phone calls for me and vote for me in November, we will win Colorado," he said. "We will win this election."
More from our Politics archive: Photos: Ten Obama fans on why they'll vote no matter what Dick Morris says