Video has surfaced of Barack Obama supporter Bruce Springsteen telling a crowd at a campaign rally that the first debate “really freaked me out.”
The legendary rocker, whose song canon is filled with several tributes to American war veterans, farmers and working-class heroes, will appear at Obama rallies in Wisconsin, Ohio and Iowa on Nov. 5, the last day of campaigning before election day.
Although The Boss has been bringing crowds to the rallies he has appeared at, the have not come close to the size of ones he participated in for either John Kerry in 2004 or even Obama himself in 2008.
The Madison, Wisconsin, rally on Monday attracted 18,000 people, as compared with 80,000 in 2004 in the same city with Kerry. Springsteen drew 50,000 in 2008 while campaigning with Obama in Ohio, nearly three times the size of the Wisconsin crowd.
Springsteen initially said he would not be campaigning this election season, telling ABC News that he didn’t want to be a “professional campaigner,” but later changed his mind after seeing the contest between Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney get closer and more contentious.
While performing a song he wrote for the Obama campaign, Springsteen describing pondering what he could about and said he got stuck when he thought about the debates.
“I was saving the best for the third [verse], cause this took me a long time,” Springsteen said. “I was trying to figure out what to write about. So I said, ‘well, for the third verse, I could write about the debates.’ Yeah. Alright, so, ‘The first debate, I wait.. Actually, the first debate really freaked me out.”
Since mid-October, Springsteen has been appearing at occasional rallies with either Obama or former President Bill Clinton singing his own, “We Take Care Of Our Own,” Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land,” and “Forward And Away We Go,” which he penned specifically for the 2012 campaign.
Before appearing at his first rally of this election, Springsteen announced on his website that he would be appearing for Obama and why he’d had a change of heart about getting involved in the presidential election the he had in the last two.
“For me, President Obama is our best choice because he has a vision of the United States as a place where we are all in this together,” Springsteen wrote. “We’re still living through very hard times but justice, equality and real freedom are not always a tide rushing in.They are more often a slow march, inch by inch, day after long day. I believe President Obama feels these days in his bones and has the strength to live them with us and to lead us to a country ‘…where no one crowds you and no one goes it alone.’”
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