(Last Updated On: November 5, 2016)

U.S. President Barack Obama acknowledged that the presidential election would be a “close race” and urged his supporters in the key battleground state of North Carolina, in particular the African-American community, to vote for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. “This should not be a close race, but it’s going to be a close race. It’s going to be especially close here in North Carolina,” Mr. Obama told several thousands of his supporters at a late night rally on Friday in Charlotte in North Carolina, a key battleground state where Ms. Clinton’s rival Donald Trump has surged ahead in opinion polls in the past week.

“And I want everybody to understand, all the progress we’ve made, everything we’ve fought for, everything we aspire to — all of that goes out the window if we don’t win this election. So we’ve got to work our hearts out over the next four days. We got to work like our future depends on it.

Because you know what? Our future depends on it,” he warned at the second rally of the day.

Mr. Obama said he knows that people in North Carolina are tired of all those advertisement on TV.

“They just get you depressed, and there’s so much noise and so much distraction. So much stuff that has nothing to do with your lives. So much stuff that’s made up and fabricated,” he rued.

“But I want you to focus on the choice that we face in this election, because if you block out the noise and the distraction, the okie—dokie, the nonsense, the hype, the misinformation — if you block all of that out, the choice could not be simpler, it could not be clearer,” he said.

“There is a reason why, in an unprecedented fashion, you have Republicans and conservatives, who aren’t running for office so they feel it’s safe to do so, to denounce Donald Trump. And the reason is, is because Hillary’s opponent, Donald Trump, is uniquely unqualified to be President; is temperamentally unfit to be Commander-in-Chief. The fact that he has gotten this far tells me the degree to which our politics has become like a bad reality TV show,” Mr. Obama said.

Ms. Clinton, he said, understands this is a big, diverse country; a big, diverse democracy.

“We don’t demonize other people… We don’t try to burn the house down when we don’t get our way. She understands that. But she needs help. She needs your help. You can’t sit on the sidelines on this one — especially here in North Carolina,” Mr. Obama said in an apparent reference to the fact that North Carolina has now become a key battleground state.

“Because some of you may be aware there was a time when African-Americans couldn’t vote here in North Carolina. You had to figure out how many jelly beans were in a jar. You had to figure out how many bubbles there were on a bar of soap.

You may also know that just recently, this governor who is currently in place signed a law that a federal judge said with ’surgical precision’ was trying to discriminate and prevent people from voting,” he said.

“Now, that law has been suspended — which is why it matters that we have an independent judiciary. It matters that we have a Constitution,” he said.

Source: The Hindu

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