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Celebrity delivers Obama's message in Wilson
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Celebrity delivers Obama's message in Wilson

Alfre Woodard, an Emmy-award winning and Oscar-nominated actress, came to Wilson to pump up volunteers at the Obama for America office on Tarboro Street and to give them that last shot in the arm as they get ready for early voting next week.

A couple hundred volunteers surrounded Woodard, smiling, taking pictures and shaking her hand.

Woodard was part cheerleader, part born-again minister and teacher.

"Should all the tax cuts only go to the wealthy?” Woodard asked the crowd.

They gave a loud resounding "No.”

"Are we going backward or forward?” Woodard asked the crowd.

"Forward,” they answered.

"Who do we go forward with?” Woodard asked.

"Obama,” they yelled and applauded.

Election Dates to Remember

Nov. 6 — Election Day
Polls are open from 6:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m.

There are two One-Stop Voting locations in Wilson:

Wilson County Board of Elections office, 112 Douglas St., beginning Oct. 18. Weekday hours Oct. 18-Nov. 2, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays, Oct. 20, Oct. 27, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Nov. 3, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 28, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Wilson County Office Building, 2201 Miller Road. Weekdays only from Oct. 22 to Nov. 2, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Click here to view sample ballots.
Woodard’s visit to Wilson only lasted for a little over half an hour. But in that short time, Woodard encouraged volunteers to keep working. Woodard told them Wilson can make a difference in the election.

"Look at your hands – I am talking literally. You have the power in your hands right now, the only power to make this a reality,” Woodard said. "This is the time to change your neighbors’ lives, the quality of their lives, your lives. Your neighbors are all across the country. All you have to do is close your hands around this moment.”

Woodard challenged those who were there to reach out past their comfort zone. She told them to go to people, both well-off financially and not so well-off, with whom they wouldn’t ordinarily talk.

"What we are talking about is for all of us – nobody is left out,” Woodard said.

Woodard said they should think about the people that Jesus talked to when he was here on earth.

"Was he only talking to people who were dressed well or people who were holy?” Woodard asked. "No. He was out talking to people that others were walking away from. Now, other people are Americans. Those people are our children. Those people are somebody’s daughter. I don’t care what condition they are in.”

Woodard said not to be put off by those who are negative toward Obama.

"Everything we need to put the economy back on track is in place,” Woodard said. "We came from unprecedented lows in health and unemployment and education and it fell on our president’s shoulders. He has shouldered it.”

In an interview with The Wilson Times after the rally, Woodard said Obama has accomplished a lot with Congress working against him.

"The opposition is always the opposition, but it is unprecedented that people, who are sworn to govern by Americans, would stand up in front of the federal building on the first day of administration and say we want to sink this presidency.” Woodard said. "Millions of Americans were suffering, hurting and struggling.”

Woodard said economists admit that since the Great Depression, the economy has never been so low.

"I just want people to know to just hold out and to take a good look at those places those safety nets that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan want to get rid of and cut and let them fall through,” Woodard said. "We have to do everything we can. The power they have right now is the power of their vote.”

Woodard said she considers herself one of the many volunteers working across the country.

"I’m an American,” Woodard said. "I grew up in a community. I live in a community. I’m raising kids. I’ve got a stake in this. So I’m here because every person brings their own different talents and gifts to this effort.

"I have to do my part. I believe in Barack Obama. My momma always said when somebody is telling the truth, you never let them stand alone.”

Woodard said she has been out, even in the snowstorms of Iowa, talking about Obama since January 2008.

"I’m still fired up behind it,” Woodard said. "There has never been so much at stake and so much possible at the same time.”

Woodard said when Obama was elected president it was historic, not just because of the obvious. She said the fact he is African-American is only a coincidence.

"What is historic is that this is the first time that a man from the ranks of working America was able to step into the Oval Office,” Woodard pointed out. "He came with middle American experiences knowing his mother and his grandmother worked hard to put food on the table, knowing he had to find a way to pay off his student loan, knowing he is raising little girls who will be women in this society.”

Woodard said she likes the fact that Obama has lived in middle America.

"He has worked, long before becoming president to make the quality of the lives of middle Americans better,” Woodard said.

Volunteer Beth Punte said she was excited that Woodard came and talked with them about their mission in the next weeks.

‘It’s just such an honor to have Miss Woodard come to Wilson,” Punte said. "I think it shows her dedication to the campaign and I know it is helping all of the volunteers.”

Carol Alexander stood quietly watching Woodard during her speech.

Alexander is also a volunteer at the Obama office.

"What I saw was inspirational,” Alexander said. "I am all fired up. I can move forward.”

Woodard visited four eastern North Carolina cities Friday afternoon: Rocky Mount, Greenville, Wilson and Fayetteville. | 265-7847
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View Comments:Show/Hide(4 comments)
Romney is still behind in Ohio said...

the state that matters the most. Sorry, Charlie.

Sunday, October 14, 2012 at 9:15 PM
Former Wilsonian said...

Obama was raised a long way from the ranks of the "working class".

Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 9:16 AM

HOPE !! CHANGE !!! HOPE !!!! CHANGE !!! HOPE !!! CHANGE !!! HOPE !!!! CHAGNE !!!! HOPE !!!
Personally Ive been screaming this the past four years and i finally figured out it was just an election slogan to get me on the band wagon. I cant beleive the first thing he did was try to releive the national debt by borrowing more money ! Even I know thats not going to work . How about tell us how he is going to fix the past four years and get up out of the debt he put us in. The peopele of this county will eventually see what he did, when the county cant borrow money again and we have to shut down services to save other services, or for just lack of money to pay for them . You alreayd see that federal services like MASA are cut, Military cuts , how much longer before it hits home.Taxes go up ( and guess what , they will go up to pay for the money we borrowrd ) Soon it will effect Social services . You may not beleive it or see it right now but its comming, if we dont CHANGE.

Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 8:09 AM
Ha said...

Yea Obama people are getting desperate because they know he is losing, go away obama

Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 7:24 AM
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