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Democrats in Auglaize County kicked off their re-election efforts for President Barack Obama against the presumed Republican candidate Mitt Romney with the grand opening of their campaign headquarters Thursday in Wapakoneta.
The local staff outlined their goals to capture voters in the predominantly Republican and conservative county in west-central Ohio.
“The Democrats have definitely not been the majority in Auglaize County for years, but the way I look at it now when you compare the two candidates that we should be the majority,” Auglaize County Democratic Party Chair Brent Henschen said. “When you look at the average person in Auglaize County or west-central Ohio and when you think back, which can you identify more with, the ideals of which campaign — the one who thinks those who make $250,000 are middle class and who wants to create tax cuts for those who make more than that.
“I think if everybody stands back they can say they much more identify with the party that can cut my taxes and the 98 percent of the people are those who are under the $250,000 threshold,” he said. “The Obama plan has already cut their taxes, helped them with college grants, helped them with health care — the things that they deal with on a daily basis.”
Henschen said voters may be able to pick one topic they don’t agree with a candidate, but he stressed when considering the day-to-day routine of the average individual that Obama and the Obama administration are “much more in line with the people who live in our area.”
With the official opening of the office, Henschen said this will alert everybody that they will be spreading the word about Obama and the reasons he and the other campaign staffers believe he is the best candidate for presidential office.
Henschen, who supported Obama in his run in 2008, noted the Affordable Care Act was necessary and one reason he favors the Democrat again. He noted he likes the fact college students can stay on their parents’ health insurance plan until they are 26, especially in this economy where graduates are having a more difficult time finding employment.
Looking back at the past four years and what Obama had to do, Henschen credited the 44th president for keeping the country moving forward economically.
“When he got in there, I think he took us from the brink of a depression,” Henschen said after eight years under a Republican. “I know things don’t go as fast as people want them to or like, but at least we are going forward and we are moving in the right direction.”
The policies of Obama also attracted two staffers to his campaign — April Nester and Katrina Myers.
Nester, 27, who grew up in Cincinnati before moving to Wapakoneta, said Obama’s message really speaks to her, especially his actions and words on health care, and has since she supported him starting in 2008.
She said she intends to help spread the word about him and his policies.
“I see a lot of misinformation out there so I really wanted to be one of those people to go talk to my neighbors, my friends and people who live in the area and get the facts out there and spread the positive message about what his campaign is all about,” Nester said.
Myers, 25, who lives in Jackson Center and who is working on her master’s in theology form Vanderbilt University, said she knew she was returning to the area this summer and knew politics this year would be an important aspect of life this year.
“I really believe in President Obama’s message and I feel that is really important, especially having grown up in a larger red, or Republican, area,” Myers said. “I just really felt it was important to get out there to talk to people and to share President Obama’s message.”