Well before the election results were finalized – but apparently with President Barack Obama’s re-election within sight – Mayor Michael Nutter joined state Democratic heavyweights Congressman Chaka Fattah and Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz in celebrating Pennsylvania’s strong voter turnout and the state once again carrying Obama.
The Pennsylvania for Obama campaign held the post-poll election night celebration at the Warwick Hotel on Rittenhouse Square, and was organized as a way for the statewide re-election campaign to thank the volunteers, campaign committee workers and local Obama coalition members for their unwavering support.
“Four more years!” an exhuberantFattah repeated amid the din of an enthusiastic crowd, pointing out that Obama’s record warranted his re-election, his winning of Pennsylvania and the electoral votes that go with it. “We want to thank each and every person in the state of Pennsylvania, and particularly in the Philadelphia region, here in Philly and Montgomery County, Delaware and Bucks. Our president has done an extraordinary job, and clearly because of the success here in Pennsylvania and what we see of his success across the country, our president is going to have four more years to continue to do that work.”
Fattah had reason outside of Obama’s re-election to celebrate, as Fattah won his own re-election bid after cruising to a victory over Republican challenger Robert Mansfield Jr. Schwartz, like Fattah, also won her re-election bid, outpointing Republican Joe Rooney.
“I want to thank each and every one of you, because tonight is a great victory for Pennsylvania. It shows Pennsylvania bleeds deeper blue than anyone expected,” Schwartz said, after being introduced by Fattah, who praised Schwartz for her efforts on the health care law. “A lot of you did what we asked, knocking on doors. [Voters] understood what was at stake in this country, and they were determined to vote.
“They didn’t care how long they had to wait, and they didn’t care how hard the state made it to come out and vote,” Schwartz continued. “They were going to stand there and vote. Pennsylvania did a great job today.”
Nutter, who serves as president of the United States Conference of Mayors, and has stumped nationwide for Obama, praised Fattah as the “Education Congressman” and Schwartz as the “Healthcare Congresswoman” before turning his remarks to Obama’s re-election.
“We talked about it, and then we voted about it. And I think we had some voting in Philadelphia and some voting in Pennsylvania,” Nutter said. “At least for tonight, blue represents joy, happiness and excitement.
“They talked about voter ID and suppression,” Nutter continued, “Voter ID or no voter ID, suppression or no suppression, folks said, ‘we’re going to vote, we’re going to vote strong, we’re going to vote hard, and you can’t stop this freight train here in Philadelphia.’”
Nutter said, through his travels as an Obama surrogate, that the only way to win an election is through a grassroots effort that includes going from door to door, going to polling places and having a sharp and effective ground game. Nutter also spoke glowingly of Obama’s record.
“Obama has worked hard, and he worked for us, and then we went out and worked for him,” Nutter said. “He brought us economic recovery, brought back the auto industry, gave us healthcare, ended one of the wars and is ending the other one, Osama bin Laden is dead and gone, al-Qaeda is on the run and he doubled the amount of Pell Grants for young people to go to college. You can now stay on your parent’s healthcare until you’re 26.”
The enthusiasm continued unabated as television screens flashed the smiling face of the 44th president. For his supporters at the Warwick Hotel, his victory was theirs, too.