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Obama promotes nonpartisan reaction to Sandy on campaign trail

November 01, 2012|By Christi Parsons
  • President Obama speaks during a campaign rally at Austin Straubel International Airport in Green Bay, Wis.
President Obama speaks during a campaign rally at Austin Straubel International… (Jewel Samad / AFP/Getty…)

In the final throes of a bitter presidential campaign, President Obama on Thursday morning said that a nonpartisan America had risen to deal with super storm Sandy and offered it as a template for the next four years.

Speaking to a crowd in Green Bay, Wis., Obama praised the “leaders of different parties working to fix what’s broken.”

“There are no Democrats or Republicans during a storm,” Obama said. “There are just fellow Americans.”

The words marked Obama’s return to the campaign trail after a three-day hiatus in which he appeared in public only to talk about the storm and the federal government’s efforts to work with state and local government to prepare and respond.

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The part about “leaders of different parties” was a clear reference to his public tour with Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, a campaign surrogate for fellow Republican Mitt Romney who nevertheless praised Obama’s accessibility and vigor in storm response.

After weeks of increasingly acrimonious exchanges, the storm produced a pause in the conversation in which both sides turned their focus to bracing for the storm and rallying around those in its path.

On Thursday, Romney was going hard after Obama. Obama returned fire in Green Bay, accusing Romney of “ruling out compromise” by offering a rubber stamp to the right wing of his party.

But first he evoked images of “communities rallying to rebuild” on the East Coast, and praised a “spirit that says, in the end, we’re all in this together.”

“We rise or fall as one nation, one people,” Obama said.

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christi.parsons@latimes.com

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