Sen. Barack Obama's visits to two North Carolina cities Wednesday attracted students from North Carolina State University to attend or tune in to their televisions to hear the senator speak about his plans for Iraq.
Obama will face off against Hillary Clinton in the N.C. Democratic primary May 6. According to Andrew Bates, junior in political science, Obama represents a "truer sense of possibility" to America's youth and is "awakening an inspiration in young people."
"Obama has a unique appeal to [college students]," Bates, the youth outreach director for the North Carolina chapter of Students for Barack Obama, said, adding that young people are discarding their reputations as apathetic citizens and showing up at the polls in record numbers in support of Obama.
The senator's morning visit to Fayetteville Technical Community College -- a few miles from Fort Bragg -- brought out about 150 veterans and servicemen and women to hear the presidential-hopeful's plans for the Iraq War.
"It's especially poignant because today marks the five-year anniversary of the War in Iraq," Bates said, commenting that this war has become "more protracted" than the Civil War, World War I or World War II. He said this has cost the United States "more than 4,000 brave [soldiers]" and about a trillion dollars.
Obama's address put a "strong emphasis on judgment" as the Illinois senator described his "methodical and sensible" exodus from Iraq, according to Bates.
"The conflict itself was predicated on false information," he said, and added that he thought Obama was the candidate to bring this war to an end.
During the afternoon speech in Charlotte, Obama addressed a crowd of thousands, who were able to acquire free tickets within the first two hours of their availability.
The senator spoke about universal health care, a sensible end to the Iraq war, corrective steps to rising income disparity and relief for the housing crisis, among other topics in his speech at the Grady Cole Center.
"Broadly, he doesn't represent just a different party, he represents a total shift in paradigm," Bates said.
© 2008 Technician via U-WIRE