McCain Campaigns In Missouri
MELISSA BLOCK, host: And now to Florida, where Senator Barack Obama has been campaigning today in Tampa and Orlando, including a rally this evening with Senator Hillary Clinton. Clinton spoke directly to the Florida voters who supported her in the primary.
Senator HILLARY CLINTON (Democrat, New York): Now, I am asking you to work as hard for Barack as you worked for me. If you make phone calls for me, make them for Barack. If you walk streets for me, make them for Barack. If you talk to your friends and your neighbors, do it again for Barack. We cannot risk four more years of the same failed Republican policies.
BLOCK: NPR's Don Gonyea joins us from that rally in Orlando. And Don, I heard Obama here leading chants of Hillary! Hillary. What's the dynamic between the two of them on stage?
GONYEA: Well, they actually met at the airport when we landed here in Orlando. Hillary Clinton went up to the steps of the plane. The two of them came down the steps together. They were laughing, they were smiling, they were gesturing, and I - was much more the same as they were both greeted by thunderous applause, as you can imagine at this rally that's underway behind me here in Orlando. So they seem to be hitting all of the right notes in terms of what they look like together, and we'll see what it means in terms of support.
BLOCK: And it is. Polls do show a very close race in Florida right now. Are there ways in which Senator Clinton can be especially helpful to him in Florida?
GONYEA: Well, the thing is, Florida is, we know, going to be very close. Well, we expect it to be close anyway. The polls show it to be close at this point. And if it's going to be close, the one thing you really want is a unified party, so certainly she helps in that regard. But also, we know that Hillary Clinton in the primaries performed much better than did Barack Obama among senior citizens, among older Democrats, and we know Florida has a lot of senior citizens and older Democrats.
BLOCK: Earlier today, Don, I understand that Senator Obama had a direct response to some comments made by Governor Sarah Palin on the campaign trail.
GONYEA: He did, and I should say he doesn't mention Sarah Palin much on the stump, but he has been here in Florida. And he was referring to a comment that she made last week in North Carolina, where she said she likes to campaign in places that are pro-American, while he responded by saying, there are no pro-American or anti-American parts of this country. There's no real America and no fake America. Then again, this is from this morning in Tampa. Give a listen.
Senator BARACK OBAMA (Democratic Presidential Candidate): The men and women from Florida and all across America who served on our battlefields, they may be Democrats, or they may be Republicans, or they may be independents, but they have fought together, and bled together, and some died together under the same proud flag. They have not served a red America or blue America, they've served the United States of America. That's what we need to remember.
GONYEA: So again, a rare direct response to something Sarah Palin said from Senator Obama.
BLOCK: Yesterday, Don, Barack Obama got the endorsement of General Colin Powell. How is that getting folded into his speeches on the stump today?
GONYEA: Its right at the top of every speech he has given since he got that endorsement. And in Florida, he has been thanking Colin Powell for the endorsement, saying he's humbled by it, calling Colin Powell a great American, a great statesman, a great soldier, but he quickly segues into saying that just because Colin Powell has endorsed, just because polls are looking good around the country, that there is absolutely no room for complacency. So, he is urging people to get out and vote, and get out and vote early, because in many places, Florida among them, you can already vote starting today.
BLOCK: That's NPR's Don Gonyea at a Barack Obama rally with Hillary Clinton in Orlando, Florida. Don, thanks very much.
GONYEA: All right. Thank you.
BLOCK: You're listening to All Things Considered from NPR News.
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