President Obama failed to appear on cue last night at the Fox Theater in Redwood City, California, a weird lapse for a president who may have been exhausted at the end of a marathon day of speechifying and campaigning.
Pool reporter Peter Baker of the New York Times offers a descriptive take on the scene at the late night fundraiser:
Your pool was brought into the Fox Theater, where the audience was being shown the campaign’s 17-minute promotional film. The movie ended with stirring tones, the lights came up and then … nothing. The stage stood empty for long minutes and no one came out, much less Potus. The crowd grew antsy and began chanting, “Obama, Obama!” Finally a woman took it upon herself to keep the audience busy, shouting, “Fired up,” followed by the crowd responding, “Ready to go.” After a few minutes, that died down. Then a man started chanting, “Four more years,” until that died down too. More minutes drained away with no one on the stage, no one addressing the crowd.
Finally when Potus was announced and entered the stage at 9:45 p.m. local (12:45 a.m. DC time), the crowd jumped to its feet enthusiastically. Potus responded to its energy. “It is good to be back in California,” he said. He then launched into roughly the same speech as in Denver.
At a fundraiser earlier in the day in Denver, Baker reported that “the room at times felt a little flat and Potus seemed a little tired.” What’s more, the crowd at the Denver event was smaller than the Obama campaign planned on, totaling only 550 compared to the 700 who were expected to attend.
Obama’s slog began at around 7:00 am when he departed the White House for Colorado Springs, Colorado, where he gave the commencement address at the United States Air Force Academy. He then staged three fundraisers, culminating in the final one in Redwood city, which ended for him at 10:17 PM local time, but 1:17 am Obama Time – that is, Eastern Daylight Time.