Bruce Springsteen announced on Thursday, Oct. 18, that he is officially endorsing Barack Obama in his reelection campaign for president. Springsteen posted a statement on his website in which he explained his support for the president and detailed his future campaign appearances in Ohio and Iowa.
Although Springtseen previously promised to stay out of the election, he said that this election is different. He felt compelled to get involved because of what Obama was able to accomplish despite extraordinary times.
"Unfortunately, due to the economic chaos the previous administration left him with, and the extraordinary intensity of the opposition, it turned into a really rough ride," Springsteen said. "But through grit, determination, and focus, the president has been able to do a great many things that many of us deeply support."
According to Springsteen, Obama's accomplishments include working to bring down unemployment, protecting the social safety net, passing the significant health care act, and rescuing the auto industry.
He also pointed to Obama's role in protecting the rights of women and "bringing us closer to full acceptance of our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters."
Springsteen also said the killing of Osama bin Laden was a major victory.
Efforts for "voter suppression," especially in Pennsylvania, however, should be given more attention, Springsteen said
"Right now the opposition’s resort to voter suppression in so many states is not receiving as much attention as it deserves," Springsteen said. "I believe that all of us, of whatever views, should be opposing these anti-voter, anti-citizen efforts."
Springsteen has long been a symbol of liberal values and blue-collar America. His support for Democratic politics has never been a secret. Springsteen supported Obama in 2008 and performed at Obama's inaugural concert. He was also famous for criticizing President Ronald Reagan in 1980 for using his name and song “Born in the U.S.A.” at a Republican rally.
The official endorsement comes at a crucial time for Obama; with just a few weeks until the elections and polls showing his lead narrowing. Springsteen will join the campaign's effort on Thursday at events in Cleveland and Ames, in Iowa, with former President Bill Clinton.
"Right now, we need a president who has a vision that includes all of our citizens, not just some, whether they are our devastated poor, our pressured middle class, and yes, the wealthy too; whether they are male or female, black, white, brown, or yellow, straight or gay, civilian or military," Springsteen said. "We’re still living through very hard times but justice, equality and real freedom are not always a tide rushing in."
His latest album, “Wrecking Ball,” includes this track about the troubles of the working-class:
Featured photo courtesy of askaticket /Flickr.