South Philly Voters Have a Message for Obama at the DNC: “Please Don’t Leave”

“President Obama, why isn’t your wife running for president instead of Bill’s?”

 

President Barack Obama will take to the Democratic National Convention stage in Philadelphia on Wednesday night to push Hillary Clinton’s case for the White House. Obama has made no secret of the fact that he thinks fighting for Clinton also means securing his own legacy. “I consider myself a runner,” he told a group of students in London in the spring. “And I’ve run my leg of the race. But then, I’ve got a baton, and I’m passing it on to the next person. And hopefully, they’re running in the right direction.”

Obama will also speak as a very popular president facing the end of his term. For the last two months, he has enjoyed his highest job approval ratings since the beginning of his presidency, according to a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll. So I decided to ask voters on the streets of South Philadelphia—locals shopping at the historic Italian Market, rather than convention-goers—what they consider to be Obama’s greatest successes and failures, and what they will miss about his presidency.

“I’ll always love him,” said Sheila Kendall, 67. “I will miss his cool walk, the way he talks. He’s just a real genuine guy.”

Dominic Cappuccio, a butcher, was less than enthusiastic, saying that policies like Obamacare hurt small businesses like his. “I don’t agree with some of his programs,” he said. “I think the little guy, the small businessman, has basically been forced to—with their hands behind their back—obey what the powers that be want them to obey.”

There was no disagreement, however, about Michelle Obama. “The first lady’s been class,” Cappuccio said.

 

A BETTER WAY TO DO THIS?

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and we can't afford to come up short. But when a reader recently asked how being a nonprofit makes Mother Jones different from other news organizations, we realized we needed to lay this out better: Because "in absolutely every way" is essentially the answer.

So we tried to explain why your year-end donations are so essential, and we'd like your help refining our pitch about what make Mother Jones valuable and worth reading to you.

We'd also like your support of our journalism with a year-end donation if you can right now—all online gifts will be doubled until we hit our $350,000 goal thanks to an incredibly generous donor's matching gift pledge.

payment methods

A BETTER WAY TO DO THIS?

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and we can't afford to come up short. But when a reader recently asked how being a nonprofit makes Mother Jones different from other news organizations, we realized we needed to lay this out better: Because "in absolutely every way" is essentially the answer.

So we tried to explain why your year-end donations are so essential, and we'd like your help refining our pitch about what make Mother Jones valuable and worth reading to you.

We'd also like your support of our journalism with a year-end donation if you can right now—all online gifts will be doubled until we hit our $350,000 goal thanks to an incredibly generous donor's matching gift pledge.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate