CLEVELAND – Speaking before thousands of soggy supporters at a rainy Cleveland rally, President Obama this afternoon unveiled some new zingers against Mitt Romney’s claims in Wednesday night’s debate.
“My opponent, he was doing a lot of, a little tap dance at the debate the other night, trying to wiggle out of stuff he’s been saying for a year,” Obama told a crowd of 9,000 in the pouring rain at Cleveland State University.
“It was like ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ Or maybe it was ‘Extreme Makeover’ debate edition,” the drenched president said to laughter from poncho-clad supporters. “No matter what he says, my opponent, he’s a big believer of these top-down economics. He thinks that if we spend another $5 trillion on tax cuts that favor the wealthiest, we get rid of more regulations on Wall Street, all of our problems are going to be solved. Jobs and prosperity will rain down from the sky.”
“I know I’m preaching to the choir here because you all are standing in the rain,” he added. “But a little rain never hurt anybody. Some of these policies from the other side could hurt a whole lot of folks.”
Obama continued to attack Romney for saying he would cut funding for public broadcasting to help reduce the nation’s deficit.
“For all you moms and kids out there, don’t worry, somebody is finally getting tough on Big Bird. Elmo, you better make a run for it,” Obama joked. “Gov. Romney is going to let Wall Street run wild again, but he’s going to bring the hammer down on ‘Sesame Street.’”
“Boo,” the audience replied.
“You want me to save Big Bird?” Obama asked as the crowd erupted into chants of “Save Big Bird!”
In response, the Romney campaign said “the President can’t defend his record of failure on jobs and the economy so he has to lie about Mitt Romney’s pro-growth economic policies.”
After the rally, the president made a surprise visit to the Cleveland West Side Market, where he stopped by the aptly named Michelle’s Bakery.
“It is no coincidence that I’m stopping at Michelle’s Bakery,” Obama said, according to pool reports. “I just want to point that out. And she spells it the right way, with two Ls.”
Obama ordered a variety of baked goods, including a piece of pumpkin cheesecake and zucchini bread, and insisted on having his picture taken in front of the sign that read, “Michelle’s Bakery.”
The president then worked his way around the other vendors, chatting with the patrons and proprietors. When he asked the owner of Rolston Poultry how business was going, the man light-heartedly replied, “terrible since you got here.”