(ORLANDO, FLA.) - Hillary Clinton urged her supporters in Florida tonight to back her former rival, telling them that it's time to "close the deal for Barack Obama."
"I am asking you to work as hard for Barack as you worked for me. If you made phone calls, make them for Barack. If you walked streets, walk them for Barack. If you talked to your friends and your neighbors, do it again for Barack," Clinton said at an outdoor rally at the Amway Arena.
She was deeply critical of John McCain and of the Bush Administration, accusing them of turning a blind eye to the economic suffering in Florida. Clinton tried to assure the crowd that Obama would fix the fledging economy, just as she says Bill Clinton did in the 1990s.
"We know that Democrats will be able to being to turn this economy around. A Democratic president did it before and a Democratic president will do it again," Clinton said. "I want you to know this: with your help America will again rise from the ashes of the Bushes."
Obama also offered praise for Clinton, calling her a friend with whom he has shared a "historic journey." Throughout his remarks, which focused heavily on the economy and home foreclosures, but Obama made a point to reference Clinton's work as well. At one point, the crowd began to chant "jobs, baby, jobs," a term that she coined during her remarks, playing off the chant heard at many Sarah Palin rallies, "drill, baby, drill" in reference to offshore oil drilling.
"You're on to something here," Obama whispered to Clinton off mic. She stood on stage with him through out his speech, often cheering and clapping. When the two took the stage together, Obama's hand could be seen on her back several times.
Today's rally was part of the campaign's aggressive push in Florida. Michelle Obama and Bill Richardson will be campaigning in the state tomorrow, in addition to Obama.