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Biden Addresses Sarasota and Bradenton Voters At Campaign Rally

Vice President Joe Biden stumps in Sarasota to address the president's jobs and economic plan.

Vice President Joe Biden greeted a crowd of nearly 1,400 packed into Sarasota's Municipal Auditorium Wednesday morning outlining a message about jobs and the economy.

But before he got started he put in a plug for Sen. Bill Nelson and for Keith Fitzgerald, who is running against incumbent Vern Buchanan for a seat in Congress. He also talked about the hurricanes and how all of the states and officials are working together to overcome the devestation from the hurricane.

"We're all better off when we're working together," he said. "After this election, I hope we'll do what we always did" Work Together."

This is Biden's first trip to Sarasota, since he visited Booker High School in 2008. Biden made a surprise stop to the Obama-Biden campaign office at Gillespie Avenue on Tuesday. This is Biden's 25th trip to Florida as Vice President and his 10th trip to Florida this year.

Biden wowed the Sarasota crowd with his speech which included specifics about medicare, women's health and equlity in the work place, the improving economy and the job market.

Lavonne Obery, a "proud Democrat" and Sarasota resident since 1972 who is going on the medicare rolls this year, said the Biden's speech was great.

"He said all of the things I wanted to hear," she said. "He focussed on specific issues, medicare, women's health, and equal pay. There were no generalities."

Biden was on the offensive against Romney, particularly about Romney's debate performance against Obama in Boca Raton.

"Eureka!" Biden said. "He found there was a binder full of qualified women!"

On foreign relations, with Russia, Biden noted Romney's reverse in stance with Vladimir Putin.

"All of a sudden he's Putin's best buddy. Bam!" Biden said. "Talkin' about Halloween."

With his various jobs, the vice president quipped, "I'm being good Biden today."

Rita Ferrandino, chairwoman of the Sarasota County Democratic Party, said the vice president's visit to Sarasota County proves the importance of Sarasota in the national election:

"Vice President Biden's visit to Sarasota Wednesday is proof that the race for Florida - and for Sarasota County - is competitive," Ferrandino said in a statement.

"Sarasota has traditionally been a Republican stronghold. However, as the Republican Party continues to move dramatically to the right with its stance on rape, women's rights, health care, education and other issues, voters are shifting their allegiance," she continued. "In fact, we expect to see more Republicans than ever voting for President Obama this year."

Pattie Lanier, a lifelong Democrat introduced Biden Wednesday morning. She has worked in campaigns since she was 13 when her mother let her distribute fliers for John Kennedy.

She is now a Medicare beneficiary who would not be able to afford the normal health checkups wihtout her benefits. She figures she would have to pay nearly $200 out-of-pocket for each check-up. She told the crowd that as a senior Obamacare has made a difference to her quality of life.

But she says it is the character of the President and the way Americans are admired in the world that motivate her to help give President Obama another four years in office. She feels there are a small handful of people around the world who can bring people together. 

She went on to talk about Obama and Biden's stance on women's rights and fair pay.

"They know women are breadwinners for their families and deserve the same rights as their counterparts," she said.

Ferrandino also hopes that early voting receives a boost from Biden's visit.

"Early reports show that Democrats are closing the gap in Early Voting and voting by absentee ballot this year. Joe Biden's visit should help boost that trend, and we are encouraging voters to Early Vote today to make sure their voice is heard."

Democrats are encouraged by the more than 220,000 Democrats who have requested absentee ballots in Florida.  There has also been an increase of 450,000 registered African American and Latino voters since 2008.  They calculate that a gain of 220,000 absentee ballots plus 450,000 new African-American and Latino registrants are vital to Obama's chances in the Sunshine State since he won Florida in 2008 by just 240,000 or 3 percentage points.

In his warm-up remarks Edward James, a state organizer for the campaign, told the crowd that if Obama wins Florida, he wins the national election and "four more years."

Harborite November 04, 2012 at 09:14 PM
Cisco, You again make a false statement without any evidence to back up your false claim. The facts are that Mitt Romney vetoed over 800 measures passed by the Democrat-controlled legislature. According to the Boston Globe , in a television ad for his 2008 presidential campaign, Romney even gloated about it. ''I know how to veto,” he said in the ad. “I like vetoes. I've vetoed hundreds of spending appropriations as governor.'' The Legislature overrode Romney's vetoes 99.6% of the time. Romney was not well liked in Massachusetts and he left office with a low 34 percent approval rating. Romney was so unpopular that he did not even bother to run for a second term. Romney's claims of being bipartisan are just like all of the false claims that he is selling to the low information voters like you.
Watts November 04, 2012 at 09:16 PM
I wouldn't recommend just staying home, just because Romney is loosing. I am sure that there are plenty of local races and measures that need to be voted on. But, for anybody who may be more of a Libertarian at heart, who was only thinking of voting Romney when they thought that he had a chance, there is no reason not to be voting Johnson at this point. The Republican party is fractured. There are two distinct interests tearing it apart. There is need for more significant parties than the two party system that we now have. To reach that, the Libertarian party needs to find some significance in the final numbers in one of these elections. Then, once that happens, you will see the Republican party come back together, as those from the extreme wing of the party will feel more ideologically comfortable over in a more promenant Libertarian party. Right now, you have a real knuckle dragging constituency string arming the rest of the Republican party (through tools like Norquist) and the result is that the Republican party is loosing any respected claims of moderation or a centrist thinking. So the party has lost loads of significant and credible voices over the past several years. So that is why you need to get out there. If you are one of the talk radio/Glenn Beck ideologues, then go vote Johnson, build up that party and let the Republicans try to reconstruct their fractured party.
hank November 06, 2012 at 02:38 AM
What is there to brag about if you were standing in an early voting line talking to people of your same ilk voting for Romney? We all know RepubLIE-KKK-Cons hover together like vultures and gang thugs. What does your comment prove?That you found yourself in a pocket of equally disgusting vindictive terrorist minded desperate voters?
hank November 06, 2012 at 02:51 AM
Please cite any presidential race in modern times when one candidate had an 80% voter margin.... And I have to laugh when I hear Repub LIE KKK cons talk about vicious ad attacks by the Democrats: Democrats are busy touting Obama's accomplishments and not attacking anyone. If you are referring to airing footage of Romney behind what he thought were closed doors talking about the 47%, that is not attacking- that is holding up a window to the world and the it's the guilty parties who outed. Its not an attack...its FACTS. ITS ON VIDEO. ITS MUTT in his own VOICE. And yes, it's UGLY, isn't it. But it isn't fiction. Its revealing the truth. So if you don't want to feel attacked by your bad deeds, don't be a person of bad deeds. By the way, how long did it take for your hemmorrhoids to heal after you had a hemmorrhoidectomy? How long did it take before you got bored with your husband? How long does it take to get caught up on paying your bills? No answer, right? BECAUSE THERE ARE MANY VARIABLES. Nobody can predict how long it's going to take to clean up the BP oil spill in the beginning, and they still cannot again. Same for the mess our country was in when Obama stepped into Bushes' Doo- doo. Only an insane idiot ( right wingers- check! ) would assume to know the answer, and to derail someone like Obama because it isn't all perfect YET. Why do you assume the USA should be bullet proof when the rest of Europe is going through the same downturns and slowly recovering?
hank November 06, 2012 at 03:02 AM
Well the Repub LIE KKK cons should be scared of Joe Biden. He is educated, well liked, and a respected figure in government. After Obama's second term finishes, Joe Biden will easily take the presidency himself. Perhaps for another 8 years too. And then all the Democrats who shined so brightly and with such conviction and eloquence at the DNC, will be strong contenders after Biden's 8 years in the White House. It could be Hell or Highwater before another Republican is in the White House again. They have become one of the most vicious, terrorist minded minorities in this country, from all walks of life. And folks are very clear on the fact that we do not ever want them to wrest control of our government again. There is no room in this world and a progressively moving USA and Europe Union to suffer at the filthy , coercive, corrupt, viscious hands of the far right . If you want to turn your society into something where this is the norm, may I strongly suggest you all move to : Mexico City, Columbia, Venezuela, and places of that ilk were corruption is on the menu and at the highest government levels possible. You all will fit right in just fine.

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