Sunday, October 26, 2008
Denver Welcomes Obama
Back in the city where he claimed history, Barack Obama presided Sunday over a Colorado rally so enormous and energetic that even he seemed surprised at his following.
"Goodness gracious," Obama said as he took the stage and peered at the human mass in Denver's Civic Center Park. Smelling victory, Obama supporters were everywhere, packing even the steps of the state Capitol way off in the distance.
In a campaign of huge Obama rallies across the United States, the Denver gathering topped them all. Local police put the crowd estimate at "well over" 100,000 people.
The setting, on a sparkling day in this battleground state, said perhaps more than Obama did in his actual speech. It rippled with the kind of enthusiasm found at victory rallies.
Later, in Fort Collins, there was more symbolism in the eyes of Obama backers. Obama spoke to tens of thousands of people on a Colorado State University lawn known as "The Oval."
Obama's campaign is capitalizing on the scope of such rallies to get people to cast votes early, permitted in Colorado and more than two dozen other states.
"How many people have early voted?" Obama said, eliciting cheers from people bundled up in fleece. "That's what I'm talking about. No point in waiting in lines if you don't have to. You know who you're going to vote for."