“They argue that if we help corporations and wealthy investors maximize their profits, by whatever means necessary, whether it be layoffs or outsourcing or union busting or whatever means are available, that that will automatically translate into jobs and prosperity,” the president said Tuesday night.
Romney’s campaign said the president’s attacks were an attempt to distract from his economic record, especially with Hispanics.
“Token gestures and election year pandering can’t make up for the fact that President Obama’s presidency has not lived up to the promises he made in 2008,” Romney adviser Alberto Martinez said in a statement Tuesday. “Over 2 million Hispanics have been plunged into poverty since President Obama took office, the unemployment rate for all Floridians remains unacceptably high, and policies like Obamacare are making life more difficult for job creators and job seekers.”
Obama was preceded on the stage by Marc Anthony. Before his four-song set, the singer urged audience members to join the campaign.
“This is one of those times where you can be part of something bigger than yourself,” he said.
Hosting the event was Miami radio personality Enrique Santos, who mixed political slogans with comic chatter in English and Spanish to appeal directly to Hispanics.
“President Obama is the only candidate with common-sense solutions to many issues which affect Latinos the most,” Santos said, and went on to talk about health care and immigration.
“Now our abuelos and abuelas don’t have to go to the santero or the botánica any more,” he joked. Then, he added, more seriously, “He wants to make sure we’re not discriminated against like we are right now in Arizona.”
General admission tickets for the event started at $100, with a limited number of tickets available for $44. Earlier Tuesday evening, Obama attended a private fundraiser at the Sunset Islands home of prominent Democratic fundraisers Abigail and F.J. Pollak, hosting 30 people who paid $40,000 each. The menu featured, among other things, duck salad over dragon fruit carpaccio with mango sauce.
F.J. Pollak is the CEO of TracFone Wireless, a prepaid wireless company. Obama appointed Abigail Pollak, an attorney and native of Peru, to the Commission to Study the Potential Creation of a National Museum of the American Latino.
Across the street from the Fillmore, a small but vocal group of about two dozen protesters gathered to call on Obama to take executive action to protect workers of federal contractors from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. There is no federal law that bans such discrimination.
The protesters, from rights organizations GetEQUAL Florida and Students Working for Equal Rights, waved signs that said “No Hate” and “End Discrimination.” They sang “we need to know” — to the tune of Marc Anthony’s I Need to Know — and chanted “we’re here, we’re queer, we will not disappear.”
Miami Herald staff writers Jordan Levin and David Smiley contributed to this report, which was supplemented with information from the Associated Press.