It’s official. The Steeler Nation has endorsed Barack Obama for President.
It must have been an awesome event in Pittsburgh’s Mellon Arena Monday. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, thousands showed up to hear the Senator from Illinois deliver his “closing argument” to the campaign:
Mr. Obama was introduced by Steelers President Dan Rooney whose presence sparked incongruous calls of “Here we go Steelers, Here we go,” in the home of the Penguins.
“Eight more days, eight more days,” the crowd chanted taking the lead of Sen. Bob Casey, who, along with Gov. Ed Rendell joined Mr. Obama on the arena floor. As they voiced their support for the Democratic nominee, thousands of other supporters still waited in the long line that wrapped around the Lower Hill site.
Obama brought his message of hope home to the voters of Pennsylvania:
“After decades of broken politics in Washington, eight years of failed policies from George Bush, and 21 months of a campaign that has taken us from the rocky coast of Maine to the sunshine of California, we are one week away from change in America,” he said as a wave of applause broke over the arena.
“I knew that the size of our challenges had outgrown the smallness of our politics. I believed that Democrats and Republicans and Americans of every political stripe were hungry for new ideas, new leadership, and a new kind of politics — one that favors common sense over ideology; one that focuses on those values and ideals we hold in common as Americans.”
“Now, Sen. McCain has served this country with distinction. And he can point to a few moments over the past eight years, on torture for example, where he has broken from George Bush,” Mr. Obama said. “But when it comes to the economy — when it comes to the central issue of this election all across then region, he don’t get it. The plain truth is that John McCain has stood with this president every step of the way. Voting for the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy that he once opposed.
“Voting for the Bush budgets that spent us into debt. He called for less regulation twenty-one times just this year. Those are the facts.”
As a Steeler fan, I have to admit seeing Dan Rooney with Barack was incredibly awesome. Look, I know Barack has been cheering many different sports teams all over this great country of ours. Pols do that all the time.
Today, one team cheered back with a thunderous roar.
The message is clear, Pennsylvania: Barack Obama is on our team now. Give him your vote.
Addendum: Franco Harris, who is also backing Barack Obama, attended the 55th Annual Autumn Leaf Festival parade on October 4 to campaign for Obama.
Editor’s Note: On Wednesday, former President Bill Clinton, one of the most beloved pols to ever visit the Keystone State will seek Democratic votes in Washington County. Our report on Turning Left will follow.