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Obama Attracts Masses of Confident Supporters in Philadelphia

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The city of Brotherly Love came together to hear Illinois senator Barack Obama speak live and in living color at Progress Plaza, in Philadelphia this past Saturday. The chant "Yes we can" could be heard blocks from the venue.

The long wait for the gates to open didn't seem to bother Philadelphians in this key swing state.

Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell both spoke at the rally.

Obama's comments were brief, hitting a variety of topics and touching on Senator McCain and Governor Palin's recent comments.

"Our destiny's not written for us, it is written by us," Senator Obama said to a roaring crowd. "The American people understand what's going on. It's not going to happen; not this time -- we can't afford 4 more years."

"I don't want you guys to be fooled when McCain and Palin start putting up ads about change. Don't be hoodwinked; don't be bamboozled; don't fall for the okey-doke," Obama said as the crowd laughed.

As far as taxes, the Illinois senator was clear, "In an economy like this one, the last thing we need to do is raise taxes on the middle class."

Obama was often forced to wait between sentences as the crowd roared. "Change means investing in our cities, and taking on corruption on Wall Street and Washington -- we'll start by ending this war in Iraq," he said. "We can do it Philadelphia, because we've done it before."

Extending in lines that stretched more than five blocks, many of the Obama supporters were volunteering in various capacities for the campaign.

"We come to any speech he gives. I spend my time calling other attorneys to make sure we get the vote," Damen Thiel, Volunteer Lawyer for Counsel for Change said.

Other supporters of Obama followed the Senator to the Democratic National Convention.

"I thought today would be the last day to see Barack Obama before he gets elected as president. His take on the economy is the best approach for regulating the banks. He also has the right approach with tax breaks," LaTanya Nelson of Woodbury, N.J. said. Nelson was among the regional volunteers present at the Democratic National Convention.

"I wanted to see Barack in Person. We need someone who can turn this country in a positive direction," Shirley Rogers, an educator in Pennsylvania said. "Obama is going to win..."

Though the rally was for Obama, rally-goers were still vocal about their views on the Republican Party.

"All I know is we can't trust the Republicans with the economy anymore," said Joanna Jackson, who traveled from New Jersey to attend the rally.

Obama closed his speech at Progress Plaza amid a roar. "We have a history of Overcoming, Philadelphia," he said.

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