Obama to visit campus, speak at public rally


University officials have confirmed that President Barack Obama will speak at USC, after rumors of his visit circulated around campus this week.

Commander in chief · President Barack Obama will speak on campus next week while he is in Los Angeles to campaign and fundraise for California Sen. Barbara Boxer. - Daily Trojan file photo

The president will give a speech open to the general public at 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 22 at McCarthy Quad, said James Grant, assistant vice president of media relations.

Jason Duong, director of the USC Political Student Assembly — the group hosting the event — said he was contacted by university officials after Obama’s staff asked to come to USC.

“I was in disbelief when I got the call,” Duong said.

Though specifics of the event are still being worked out, Duong said, such as whether or not classes will be cancelled, PSA will be reaching out to several campus groups to help with organization.

His major focus now is to get as many students as possible to attend, regardless of their political inclinations.

“Whether they like him or not, this is definitely something that’s great for the university,” Duong said. “I’d encourage all students to come see what he has to say.”

Obama has spent significant time on the campaign trail recently, lobbying on behalf of incumbent Democrats who have found their re-election bids too close for party comfort.

One of those politicians includes California Sen. Barbara Boxer, who will also make an appearance on campus on Oct. 22.

The Democratic National Committee has rented space within the Ronald Tutor Campus Center to host a fundraiser for Boxer, a third-term incumbent who is locked in a tight race with former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina. Obama is expected to campaign with Boxer while in Los Angeles.

Grant stressed the Boxer fundraiser was separate from the president’s rally and said that USC rented space out to the DNC as it would any other outside organization looking to use university facilities. The DNC is paying for the space, he said.

The Boxer campaign could not be reached for comment, but Patrick Bailey, associate dean and executive director of student life and involvement, said the campus center Grand Ballroom had been booked for the lunch-time event.

Though the president attended a fundraiser in Exposition Park last spring, next week marks the second time Obama has come to USC’s campus. The president spoke to students in October 2006 as a U.S. senator.

Obama will join the ranks of several prominent politicians who have come to USC either as president or a presidential hopeful, including Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon and Dwight D. Eisenhower. The most recent sitting president to speak on campus was Ronald Reagan in 1984.

Students said they are excited to have the opportunity to hear the president speak and hope he can motivate students to vote by talking about issues that matter to them.

“He’s faced  a lot of voter apathy in our generation, and it’s very important for people to vote — whether they are Democrats or Republicans — and be involved politically,” said Mason Flink, a graduate student studying motion picture production. “If he can inspire students to get involved by coming to campus, it’s a good thing.”

Nelson Brooks, a junior majoring in business administration, said although he probably won’t attend the speech and doesn’t share the same political beliefs as Obama, he still thought the visit was important for the university.

“It’s definitely a privilege for our school to host him,” Brooks said. “Regardless of political party, he’s the president of the most powerful country in the world, and that is a huge honor for our school.”

Duong agreed.

“Having such a crucial figure not only for California but for the nation really is a testament to what we’ve been doing as a university and how our students are engaging the public,” he said. “I mean, if the president of the United States wants to come to our university, that’s a huge deal.”

Rachel Bracker contributed to this report.

  • Marilyn

    It takes time to grow up and learn to share.

  • missy

    is the public allowed to attend this event as well??

  • Rod Fry

    You have just put the Hex on this weeks football game.
    SHAME ON YOU for having this loser speak at USC

    • BettysueLA

      I am a USC Alum and spent the last two years making a documentary film about Obama and his criminal pals in the DNC. These people are corrupt, criminals who belong in Federal Prison, and Obama should be impeached. Period. I am stunned that anyone at USC would be ignorant enough to support this fraud who has destroyed our country. Shame on you if you attend this BS rally, and support this Anti-American twit. I thought we were all smarter than that. If you don’t understand what is being done to this country by Obama and his loons, then you better educate yourselves before there is nothing left for your children. The American Dream is just about dead, thanks to 4 years of Nancy Pelosi and 2 years of Obama. I can’t imagine my fellow Trojans being too dumb to “get it.” Show this loser the door and go do something constructive with your time.

  • Obummerout

    I hope you guys can see through his BS and show him the door. This wonderful country is doomed if we have to put up with another term of this poor excuse for a president.

    The middle class will be totally destroyed by his policies.

  • Wendy

    Oh Barry if you only knew how CRYSTAL CLEAR the American people’s thinking is your mind would be completely blown away! The students at USC are on to your liberal, out of control spending and usless ways!! The people will be using their God given power, talent and freedom to vote out your corrupt thugs in office this November 2nd!! Quit wasting our tax dollars sporting around the country in Air Force One campaigning at our universities for your own self gain and washed up Dems!! Our youth is on to you!! They know that we need JOBS in America and our economy stimulated not morons re-elected into office to control us and push socialism on the American people!! They do listen to their parents!! Go back to the White House sit down have ANOTHER BEER & ANOTHER ROUND OF GOLF on us! Afterall, it’s what you do best!! Rest up Barry, relax and enjoy the rest of your term in office as the American people are READY, WILLING AND ABLE to vote you out of office in 2012!

  • Remembernovember

    Government jobs for all! Tax the wealthy! More spending and government bailouts! Oh and let’s make our countries healthcare (which is number 1 in the world) like the DMV. Obama has wrecked his party but that’s probably Bushs fault, too.

  • Anna

    Who is running the White House? Obama is such a egomaniac he has to pump himself in crowds he carefully arranges to fan his own ego. He is a menace.

  • Johnny

    Vote republican if you want things in our country to improve

    • Micki

      Vote Republican and you deserve what you will get this time. Didn’t the conservative, no-regulation, let business rip everyone off, wreck the economy enough for you last time? I support Obama!

      • Wendy

        @Micki…It was the Dems…. Everyone should own a home (whether they can pay for it or not) campaign through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (unregulated) that has helped BK our country and has caused this housing collapse!! Don’t be a sheep and get your facts before condemning the Republicans. It’s not about Dems vs Repubicans right now it’s about survival and voting in those Americans which will protect and preserve the values on which America was founded! Do you really want to be regulated and controlled forever??? Wake up and take a stand! Value yourself and your own personal efforts for your own well being and for your future generations! I’ll leave you with the following awesome quote from Dr. Adrian Rogers.

        “The late Dr. Adrian Rogers (1931 to 2005) Memphis , TN , offered the following observation several years ago and it bears great Significance today:

        “You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the rich out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything the government does not first take from somebody else.

        When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend is about the end of any nation.”

      • BettysueLA

        Like I said above, if you are still listening to the bought and paid for media lies about who destroyed the economy, then you need a better education than clearly USC is providing you. The global economy collapsed because of Fannie and Freddie – the Democrat SCAM that has cost us 6 Trillion Dollars, and sent a shockwave around the world, causing other countries to suffer through a collapse.

        You can blame Carter and Clinton for the CRA (look it up) and the housing bubble, then Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Frank Raines, etc. ALL DEMONCRAPS for Fannie and Freddie and the notion that giving away free houses, causing banks to collapse because no one paid their mortgages, etc. is something only a Demoncrap would think is smart.

        Bush, McCain and the GOP have REPEATEDLY tried to stop the Demoncrap scam, and they were prevented from doing so. Even as recently as the Fraud’s so called “financial bill” in which the Demoncraps REFUSED to add the GOP amendments to regulate Fannie and Freddie. Bush went to CONgress 17 times in ONE YEAR to tell the Commuloons that the economy would collapse if they didn’t stop the Fannie and Freddie mess. If you have a brain, you can go to youtube and find the videos if you search “Democrats and Fannie and Freddie.” Also, it’s Congressional Record that Bush, McCain and the GOP tried to stop it. Before you lie that “Bush did it” and make a fool of yourself, get some facts.

        If you are American, you vote GOP in two weeks. The rest of you grow up, do some reading and educate yourselves, and for God’s sake stop thinking it’s cool and groovy to be a so called “Progressive” (Communist). It didn’t work in Soviet Russia, and it’s not working in America. Is this REALLY the life you want for your kids? The highest poverty level in history, highest unemployment, all the jobs and businesses leaving the country. LOOK AT CALIFORNIA. Failed liberal policies and we are BANKRUPT. You get what you deserve. Wake up and vote like adults.

        • BettysueLA

          Oh, yeah, and the big news today is that after we taxpayers have ALREADY bailed out Fannie and Freddie to the tune of BILLIONS the estimate is that Obama and his criminals will be raping us of $363 Billion MORE in the years to come. Like I said, they belong in PRISON.

  • Muntadhar al-Zeidi

    I urge all USC students to attend the Hussein rally, and make sure to wear a good pair of shoes. I will be attending to report for the Alibaba News.

  • Tolson

    Pike #1

  • Freddy G

    He won’t be taking any questions that are not on the teleprompter

    • Ken Van der Meeren

      Hi Freddy,

      If he is in fact only taking questions from a teleprompter and you are involved in this area, how can I send in my question? I’m an Arts reporter at USC Annenberg.
      Best,
      Ken

  • USC ALUM

    Wonderful news about the Presiden’ts upcoming visit on Friday to the USC campus. Have an open mind;listen and ask questions. This is a rare opportunity for students to engage in the political process with the POTUS. For those of you that do not agree with his positions on the key issues, please refrain here from espousing more of the ridiculous, inflammatory comments that are coming hourly from the airwaves in the form of blatant fearmongers such as Limbaugh, Rove, Gingrich and Palin. History has shown that fearmongering, prejudice,ignorance and hate will not succeed.

    • FirstAmendmentBeliever

      USC Alum is another left wing extremist who believes the First Amendment only applies if you agree with him. Typical Nationalist Socialist hate speech disguised as tolerance. USC Alum…did you hate war until it became Obama’s war in Afghanistan? Did you hate the Patriot Act until Obama used it suppress free speech? Were you for the legailization of marijuana till Obama’s AG decided to prosecute you anyway? Were you for the closing of Gitmo until Obama ran into reality? Were you for Gay Marriage till Obama invited Rick Warren to the inauguration. Hypocrite.

      • Micki

        National Socialists hate speech. Nonsense! Remember the Nazis were conservative, pro-big business, pro-family, nationalist, pro-military build up, JUST LIKE THE REPUBLICANS AND TEA BAGGERS.

        • Jymie

          Actually, little Micki, the Nazi party was the National Worker Platform which was the Socialist Party. They ran against the conservative party dear, not as the conservative party. They ran on the Healthcare platform little one. Learn history prior to quoting. I expect more even if you are only educated in the US.

          Cambridge University PhD. and USAF Veteran.

    • Joe

      Great message there, USC ALUM: “Come with an open mind, engage, ask questions, and listen… and if you disagree with my side, you’re a blatant fearmonger inflammatory idiot who takes orders from the monstrous demons I imagine the following people (who I never listen to) to be.”

  • char

    I am so proud to be part of the Trojan Family….Welocme to USC Mr. President!!!!!

  • Tex

    Let me personally invite President Obama to our daily 4:20 celebration in New North. Come and smoke the peace pipe with us!

    • Ideas

      Now there’s a toke I can believe in.

  • Maria R (Class of ’95)

    Great News! Presidend Obama has faced many challenges during his administration and has demonstrated that he can lead the country through them.

    The middle class is hurting and we have a president that can fight for us. Our incomes have not seen a rise since 1999. Health care and financial reforms are essential.

    Lets work for a strong middle class!

  • Zara

    How sad that a USC GRADUATE, someone who claims to have a degree from USC would believe, in any way, that the current US administration is “socialist”. The current US administration has made a number of mistakes, and their policies are often illogical, but socialist? I think USC needs to look at what we teach in our classrooms if graduates do not know or understand the fundamentals of government, and so hop on what ever populist “express” train is riding through town. Just because someone on TV calls Obama a Nazi or socialist or Muslim does not make it true.

  • Bryan (Class of ’07)

    First the sanctions and now this. It’s been a tough year at USC. Fight on, Trojans. It can only go up from here. Beat the Bears! Beat the Sanctions! Beat the Socialism!

    • Ideas

      lol wut.

      Seriously? Socialism? Did you go to social studies in high school? Do you know what socialism is? Because this IS NOT socialism.

      • Jymie

        You obviously do not know what Socialism is. It’s sad because ‘Ideas’ that is exactly what the Democrats are pushing. Look at the Socialistic countries instead of the mind numbing books that are geared to keep you ignorant here in the US.