President Obama Attacked Rick Perry in His Speech

For the first time Barack Obama addressed his potential reelection rival Rick Perry. Though he did it without mentioning a name.

President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Annual Phoenix Awards in Washington, D.C., Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011. Photo: Chuck Kennedy/The Official White House

For the first time this election season, President Barack Obama addressed a potential reelection opponent, using a fundraiser in California to criticize Texas Gov. Rick Perry, albeit not by name.

President Barack Obama slammed Texas Gov. Rick Perry, criticizing him as “a governor whose state is on fire, denying climate change.”

Barack Obama also expressed bewilderment at the state of the Republican party — referring to GOP debate attendees who booed a gay service-member serving in Iraq.

“Some of you here may be folks who actually used to be Republicans but are puzzled by what’s happened to that party, are puzzled by what’s happening to that party. I mean, has anybody been watching the debates lately? You’ve got a governor whose state is on fire denying climate change,” he said, to applause.

“It’s true. You’ve got audiences cheering at the prospect of somebody dying because they don’t have health care and booing a service member in Iraq because they’re gay.”

“That’s not reflective of who we are. This is a choice about the fundamental direction of our country. 2008 was an important direction. 2012 is a more important election,” Obama said.

“We’re going to have a stark choice in this election,” he said. “This is a choice about who we are and what we stand for and whoever wins this next election is going to set the template for this country for a long time to come.”

President Obama underlined that it’s not enough for the supporters in the audience to support him. He said if their friends and neighbors are reading the Wall Street Journal editorial page or watching Fox News the donors at this event need to talk to “push back” on their “inadequate information.”

“And in some cases I may need you to have some arguments with our progressive friends,” Mr. Obama said. Obama made the comments Sunday at a fundraiser at the Silicon Valley home of John Thompson, chairman of Symantec Corp.

The fundraiser was held in the backyard – yard is a gross understatement – of the home. Cocktail tables were draped in either navy blue or white cloths. There was a stage for the band splashed in alternating blue, purple and yellow lighting. A large brick fireplace was blazing.

There were bar stations throughout. The area was landscaped with flower gardens and clipped hedges, a water fountain sculpture, winding paths covered with stones, trees and beds of roses.

Mr. Obama called the people in the room “my stockholders.” He began by talking about the economic and challenges when he took office.

“I’m back to report to you, my stockholders,” he said. Over the past 2.5 years he said he has rescued economy; “decimated” al Qaeda including killing bin Laden; ended don’t ask, don’t tell; created the consumer protection agency, Lilly Ledbetter; environmental moves like fuel efficiency standards; and by 2013 – “as long as I get a second term” – health care reform will be implemented.

President also mentioned deficit reduction and the need for everybody to do their fair share, including the people at his fundraiser.

“We have to remind ourselves is the reason we’re successful is because somebody made an investment in us,” he said. “We didn’t do all of this on our own.’

Obama is on a three-day fundraising swing through the West Coast, his remarks coming at an event raising $875,000 for his campaign and the Democratic National Committee. [via Huff Post, Business Insider and Greta Wire Fox News Insider]

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