Advertisement

Archive for Sunday, May 11, 2008

Obama rally draws fans across racial, age spectrum

From left, Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, Bud Stallworth, Teresa Sims and Haskell student Krystal Jumping Elk, all Obama supporters, talk Saturday about the 2008 Democratic Convention. They attended the "Vote For Change" rally at Kansas University's Burge Union.

From left, Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, Bud Stallworth, Teresa Sims and Haskell student Krystal Jumping Elk, all Obama supporters, talk Saturday about the 2008 Democratic Convention. They attended the "Vote For Change" rally at Kansas University's Burge Union.

May 11, 2008

Advertisement

When it comes to the 2008 race for president, Krystal Jumping Elk, a freshman at Haskell Indian Nations University, says only one candidate is thinking about issues important to American Indians. And after former Sen. Tom Daschle, of South Dakota, campaigned at Haskell for Barack Obama in late January, Jumping Elk said many of her classmates began to support the Illinois senator.

"He stands for change. He has a lot of native issues on the table. We need someone to put that out there," Jumping Elk, 19, said.

She spent Saturday canvassing Lawrence with other volunteers from the Obama campaign as part of a nationwide effort to register voters. More than 100 events, including in Kansas City, Kan., and Overland Park, sought to bring new and lapsed voters into the contentious Democratic race, where Obama and Sen. Hillary Clinton are trading barbs in pursuit of valuable superdelegates and state primary victories.

"Since Feb. 5, we haven't done much in Kansas. This is our kickoff for the next six months," said volunteer Clarissa Unger, a Kansas University junior who was elected to represent the state at the Democratic National Convention.

Unger, Jumping Elk and other volunteers gathered at KU's Burge Union, where Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, State Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, and former KU basketball star Bud Stallworth spoke to nearly 30 supporters; organizers said they expected up to 50 people to participate.

Stallworth, who grew up in Alabama in the racially divided 1950s and 1960s, said, "Dreams were dreams back then. As an African-American growing up in the South, you didn't have a lot of rights.

"When we talk about change, I know things can be changed."

Sebelius said only 1.2 million Kansans voted in the last presidential election; there are 2.1 million Kansans eligible to vote.

"One of the things Senator Obama knows about this country is that there are a lot of people whose voices are not being heard, whose lives are not counted when you look at politics in this country," she said, describing the need to lock in voters who could "change the electoral map in this country for decades to come."

"There are way too many 20-somethings who have been tuned out and turned off," Sebelius said.

But, she said, Obama's campaign has ignited "some of the most exciting voter registration and turnout efforts I've ever seen in my lifetime. : We were losing a generation of voters, and they are showing up, not only in Kansas, but all around the country."

She said Obama is moving closer to securing the party nomination, but predicted Clinton would win upcoming contests in West Virginia and Kentucky. He swept the Kansas caucus on Feb. 5, winning more than 73 percent of the vote.

Lawrence resident Barbara Lauter shared the governor's sentiment. She said she is concerned about the divisiveness in Washington.

"This is a last chance to right our country," she said. "I think we need a whole new philosophy and a new leader.

"It doesn't hurt that he has a Kansas mother," she said. "Kansas common sense."

Comments

jaycee 6 years, 7 months ago

Well, y'all see, I'm from a little bitty ole town and Mr. Obama doesn't really care for us cuse we hang onto our God, Guns, and religion, and Mr. Obama thinks we're all nutjobs. Well, Mr. Obama, I think you're the nutjob, and you're the south end of that ole cow goin north. You won't ever get my vote, I like someone that will stand up for us and Mr. Obama 's already lying down in the sand with the muslim extremists.

DragonScorpion 6 years, 7 months ago

~"There are way too many 20-somethings who have been tuned out and turned off [...] [Obama's campaign has ignited] some of the most exciting voter registration and turnout efforts I've ever seen in my lifetime. : We were losing a generation of voters, and they are showing up, not only in Kansas, but all around the country." ~ Gov. SebeliusThis is so true, and so very critical in these challenging times. The nation and the world is very much at a crossroads in these times. While cynicism is still dangerously strong in this country, I think there is a sense of hope and inspiration that hasn't been seen in a very long time.As a nation we cannot afford not to be involved and motivated for real, positive, progressive change. We cannot afford to wait for someday, we cannot afford to wait for 2012, we need real change right now.

ampm 6 years, 7 months ago

I was aware, and had commented to my family that Senator Obama had not left out the Native American in his speeches when he talked about the unification of all the American people. I also watched to see if any of the other two candidates woud be mindful of us..... The answer is NO.....Thank You, Senator Obama. With you, I feel that we are not forgotten.

weatherguy48 6 years, 7 months ago

Pssh. All natives do nowadays is bitch about the whites, the blacks, and everyone else. Why should we give a crap in the first place? You all are holding us responsible for what happened centuries ago.You don't tip the pizza guy, out of spite. You fight the SLT, out of spite. You spew anti-white epithets, out of spite. You are against everything that constitutes our city's growth, out of spite. Do not forget that we not only host you in our city, but barely tolerate you.We get it, you were here before us, and we wrecked your stuff. It's called evolution. Get over it.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.