President says moving venue for acceptance speech was difficult decision
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- President Barack Obama says the decision to move his acceptance speech from Bank of America Stadium inside to Time Warner Cable Arena was a tough one. He told supporters who hoped to see the address he'll work to get them into another event in the future.
The president held a conference call with some of the more than 60,000 people who picked up community credentials to attend the outdoor speech. Because of the change in venue, back to the much smaller Time Warner Cable Arena, all of those tickets are worthless.
Obama said he couldn't allow attendees and public safety officials to be out in the stadium in a lightning storm. He said it would be too unsafe to try to move thousands of people in and out of their seats quickly.
"I hope we're going to be able to get together in your own towns and your own cities and we're going to do everything we can to get you into events taking place near you," said Obama.
People who waited in line for a ticket listened in and now many of them are hoping for another chance to see the president before Election Day.
"As far as supporting the president, that's what's most important," said Sheila Moore. "He spoke about enthusiasm. I am just as enthusiastic as I was before."
The Obama campaign is asking people who planned to attend the outdoor speech to go to one of a number of watch parties in Charlotte and in cities across the country.
Republicans have criticized the decision to move indoors, saying it could be more about concerns that the stadium wouldn't be full. But Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said the venue would have been standing room only Thursday night with people waiting outside hoping to get in.