Yesterday, President Obama spoke to a crowd at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
If you’ve been marching for criminal justice reform, that’s great. But you know what, you better vote for a President and a Congress who actually care about disrupting the pipeline from underfunded schools to overcrowded jails. Protests aren’t enough if you’re not voting. You’ve been marching for the environment and to do something about climate change — I’ve heard you. But you better vote for the next President and Congress believing in science, and who will protect the progress we’ve made so we can leave behind a world that we’re proud of for our children.
If you want more good jobs, you want to have a higher minimum wage, you want help with respect to student loans — don’t just sit there and complain. Don’t just sit there in the barber shop and the beauty shop and watching the Tar Heels and say, you know, politics is all messed up, but what’s the score. No, no, no. You can watch the game after you vote.
And the good news is, you’ve got a proof point. You know it works. You know it works because so many of you voted in ’08. And it’s because of you that millions of people have health care today that didn’t have it before. It’s because of you that millions of young people are going to college that couldn’t afford it before. It’s because of you that a Marine can serve his country without hiding the husband he loves. It’s because of you that more young immigrants came out of the shadows and are serving our country.
North Carolina, I’m asking you today what I asked of you eight years ago. I’m just asking you to believe not in my abilities to change, not even just in Hillary’s ability to bring about positive change. I’m asking you to believe in your ability to bring about change. I am not on the ballot, but I tell you what, fairness is on the ballot. Decency is on the ballot. Justice is on the ballot. Progress is on the ballot. Our democracy is on the ballot right now.
And Hillary gives you a chance to advance our democracy. But you’ve got to do everything you can to make sure everybody votes — your friends, your family, your cousins, your uncle, your neighbors, your coworkers. Tell them this is the moment where America stands up for our best selves. Stand up and reject cynicism. Stand up and reject fear.
Choose hope. Choose hope. Choose hope. Choose hope. Choose hope. Vote!
Full transcript below.