President Barack Obama made a swing through Miami Beach on Tuesday evening to pursue two re-election campaign goals: raise money from well-heeled donors and lure Hispanic voters — on this night, with a little salsa music.
Both efforts are crucial for Obama, whose campaign has spent the past few days warning that it might be outspent by Republican rival Mitt Romney and aggressively courting Hispanic voters who could decide the election in swing states, including Florida.
Obama appeared at the Fillmore Miami Beach at Jackie Gleason Theater after pop star Marc Anthony, who sang with a 16-piece band for the crowd of about 2,300 before the president made his entrance, without the singer.
Obama spoke for about 35 minutes, framing the election not as a report card on his first term but as a choice of ideologies on how to heal the fractured economy.
“We understand how much work we have left, but the debate in this election is not whether we need to do better,” he said. “The debate in this election…is about how do we do better.”
He also gave a shout-out to the NBA champions Miami Heat, saying, “You guys earned it.”