LAS VEGAS (AP) — President Barack Obama is doing his part to turn out the Democratic vote on Nov. 2.
On a cross country campaign swing through five states in four days, he is making full-throated appeals to the vast coalition of women, Hispanics and young voters who helped put him in the White House two years ago.
The message to those now feeling disillusioned by the pace of change: Don't give up.
"If everybody who showed up in 2008 shows up in 2010, we will win this election," Obama said Friday night in Las Vegas, where he campaigned with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada. Reid is in the country's most closely watched Senate race, a matchup against tea-party backed Sharron Angle.
Obama's campaign blitz ends Saturday at a Minneapolis rally for gubernatorial candidate Mark Dayton. The former U.S. senator is facing a challenge from Republican Tom Emmer.
At stake on Nov. 2 is control of Congress for the next two years. Democrats are in charge but expected Republican gains — or perhaps a takeover of the House — could slow progress on the remainder of Obama's agenda.
The White House naturally doesn't want that to happen, so Obama has been campaigning in Democratic states where key congressional allies, such as Reid, are fighting hard to emerge victorious from close races that became that way, in part, because of voter angst and anger over the economy, unemployment and other issues.
At every stop, sometimes more than once a day, Obama is driving home his core campaign message that change is slow to come but it's coming, so don't give up. Voting Republican, he says, would be a mistake for the country.
"This election is a choice between the policies that got us into this mess and the policies that are leading us out of this mess," Obama told a rally at the University of Southern California, where he campaigned with Sen. Barbara Boxer and gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown. "A choice between the past and the future, a choice between hope and fear, a choice between moving forward or going backwards.
"I don't know about you, but I want to move forward," he said, his voice booming across the campus grounds because he leans into the microphone at certain points in the speech for emphasis.
There is more campaigning yet on Obama's schedule.
On Monday, he'll be in Rhode Island to raise money for the House Democrats' campaign committee. He is then scheduled to spend the rest of the week in Washington, including taping an appearance on "The Daily Show" with Jon Stewart. On the weekend before the election, Obama will make a final get-out-the-vote push at events in Bridgeport, Conn., Chicago, Philadelphia and Cleveland.
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