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Posted on Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 5:59 a.m.

Obama in Ann Arbor: President speaks today on college affordability at University of Michigan

By Staff


President Barack Obama talks about higher education funding Friday at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

(Related Coverage: Mega guide to the president's visit)

A reporting team from has been at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor all morning, reporting live updates from President Barack Obama's appearance.

11:15 a.m.: Traffic is congested, but police are removing barricades from the South State area. Roads should be opened soon, probably by noon, according to officers on the scene.

10:59 a.m.: Motorcade starts rolling out of Ann Arbor. Police say it's unclear when roads will reopen.

10:52 a.m.: An email from Eastern Michigan University arrived a short time ago. Here's reaction from EMU:

Eastern Michigan University President Susan Martin was among the special guests invited to President Barack Obama's address on higher education at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor this morning. Following the address, President Martin issued this statement:

"President Obama's emphasis on keeping higher education affordable is absolutely the right message at the right time, and mirrors the efforts of Eastern Michigan University. Over the last three years we have been a national leader in tuition restraint, with an overall increase of only 2.5 percent -- including 2010 when we held tuition, room and board to a "0,0,0" increase. Students are paying only $20 a credit hour more than three years ago -- despite the significant reduction in state funding. At the same time, we have increased financial aid support by 68 percent in the last five years. Supporting Michigan students and helping them earn a degree is key to our state's economy. We are pleased to see this national focus on a critical issue for our nation's future."

10:50 a.m.: We just published a gallery of photos of the event from readers. Check them out.

10:30 a.m. Keeping that promised focus on college costs. Obama says the government cannot just keep subsidizing student aid. He says every college and university must help make sure every American can afford a world-class higher education.

10:14 a.m. Obama didn’t waste time — getting right to talking about the auto industry and the federal government placing its bets on the American auto industry. “Michigan is all about making stuff. If there is anybody in America who can teach us about how to bring back manufacturing. It is the great state of Michigan.”

Hundreds of students in the crowd are cheering and holding up cell phone cameras.

10:05 a.m. Obama is discussing Michigan’s work force, American ingenuity and the State of the Union speech. Outside, Ben Tabatowski-Bush and his two children remain ticketless but they don’t care — they said they are happy to be near the speech. “I think this all will be very memorable,” he said. “Even if we didn’t get in.”

Sandra Tighe of Lodi Township felt the same way. “It’s an opportunity of a lifetime.”

10:01 a.m. “Where’s Denard?” First of many mentions of the U-M quarterback. Crowd appreciates it too.

9:59 a.m. And, with a roar of the crowd, the speech is on. Want to watch? Here is a link to the live stream.

9:50 a.m. Obama is on the stage. While everyone is killing a few minutes before his speech, the VIPS are making the most of it: they are getting photos with Denard Robinson.

9:46 a.m. Running late? Admission is officially closed. The last person was let into the field house at 9:30 a.m., according to volunteers.

9:41 a.m. He’s here. Background music: U2’s City of Blinding Lights. Cheers. A lot of them.

9:40 a.m. Obama is expected to arrive any second.

9:36 a.m. There’s a special dignitary section where the VIPs are waiting for Obama. They included David Brandon, U-M’s athletic director. 9:32 a.m. So much for the tight time table: The White House is reporting that the speech will now begin at 9:45 a.m.

The crowd doesn’t seem to mind: a huge cheer just went up for Denard Robinson.

9:24 a.m. The hour is drawing near, though there is no sign of the motorcade near U-M yet. TV crews from Detroit and Toledo are on site, and there are multiple broadcast opportunities for people who want to watch Obama’s speech. Here is our story detailing them.

9:20 a.m. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder is a confirmed no-show for the speech. His day’s agenda includes a speech at the Michigan Press Association meeting in Grand Rapids, a stop at Gentex in Zeeland, and remarks at the Henry Ford Museum’s “Driving America” exhibit opening ceremony.

9:12 a.m. They’re onto the Pledge of Allegiance.

9:09 a.m. The crowd is singing the National Anthem.

9:05 a.m. The line has been depleted.

9 a.m.: Several local Democrats are in the house.

Ann Arbor Mayor John Hieftje: "It's billed as an education speech. We'll see how that comes out. I'm hoping he's going to say some stirring things and announce some programs that are going to help people get an education they can afford."

State Sen. Rebekah Warren on today: "I think it's exciting. For us, the president has always remembered Michigan. He never turned his back on us."

Asked how political he thought Obama might get today, state Rep. Jeff Irwin jokingly replied: "6 out of 10." He acknowledged the president is here, at least in part, kicking off his 2012 campaign.

8:51 a.m.: The line had been moving at a slow but steady pace, and now it's tapering off. There are very few people heading to the practice field. Here's a video that we posted about a half hour ago that shows the line.

8:32 a.m.: Saline High School senior Aviva Shwayder, wrapped from head to toe in a thick orange and yellow blanket, is seeing Obama for the second time in one year. Last summer she was selected by Girls' Nation to meet Obama at the White House." I never thought I'd be able to see him again, much less in my hometown," she said. "To be able to see a sitting president is one of the truest acts of citizenry I think."

She waited in line for seven hours for her ticket and said she would have waited longer if she had to. "I admire him as a person with strong morals and ethics."

Shwayder came out to see the president even though she has a calculus test today. Fortunately, it's at the end of the school day, so she's planning to be back in time.

8:19 a.m.: University of Michigan grad Eugene Kang, a special assistant to President Obama, was spotted walking around the media area pumping his fist to the sound of the Michigan fight song. Kang is a graduate of Ann Arbor's Greenhills School.

8:15 a.m.: When you see photos and video of the speech, and the camera pans the crowd, you won't see people dressed in identical shirts that could be considered propaganda.

That's not allowed - and the reason several U-M students were collecting armfuls of bright blue shirts from the Clean Coal Group. They'd been distributed earlier, but no one was allowed inside with them.

8:12 a.m.: U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan told reporters this morning at the event that the administration would use incentives — or “carrots,” as he called them — to entice states to enact legislation to keep college tuition low.   "We want to be very thoughtful" about the process, he said, drawing comparisons to the Race to the Top competition that prompted states to approve new laws allowing for more charter schools. "For too many middle class folks, they’re starting to think college is not for them."   Duncan said its primary goals are to boost graduation rates, keep tuition low and increase the number of students getting jobs after graduation.   One of the reasons the administration chose U-M for its event was because “we’re trying to improve completion rates” and U-M has high graduation rates.


Melanie Maxwell |

8:04 a.m.: Two anti-abortion protesters are at the practice field entrance next to the fieldhouse.

Judy Paga of Lapeer County and her friend, Ellen Myers of Romeo, are holding up signs with fetuses that say, "Obamanation." They're expecting more pro-life protesters to join them over the next two hours.

7:55 a.m.: People are still arriving to stand in line, and U-M has several people on site to direct them to the end of it. VIPs are arriving, too, but they get to bypass the group, which still is circling the field adjacent to the fieldhouse. Among them so far: Sen. Carl Levin and state Rep. David Rutledge.

Some people tried to get "The Wave" started, but it petered out pretty quickly.

7:40 a.m.: U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan is in the fieldhouse. He's gearing up for a TV interview with the stage and crowd as a backdrop. He visited U-M in September, calling U-M's School of Education a "model."

7:34 a.m.: Obama will be rolling out his plan for college funding, which will affect schools that don't keep costs in check. just posted a story from the Associated Press about it.

7:30 a.m.: Meaghan Thompson and Hailey Burns were walking on State Street, trying to figure out the best route to the fieldhouse. Police kept them on the east side of the street.

They didn't have a sense of how long the line was or how long they'd have to wait - but also said the weather wasn't going to keep them away.

"There's no way we’d stay home," Burns said.

7:17 a.m. : The U.S. Secret Service is doing security checks. It's going smoothly. People need to open coats and put anything else on the table for security to check. People are giving up their bottles of water and leftover food from their time in line since they can't take them in.

Nobody seems to have brought a purse, per instructions.

7:10 a.m.: They're letting people in, one at a time. There are six security stations.

And yes, the crowd cheered. Someone yelled "Number one!" in honor of Teman Evans (See below - and Thursday's coverage).

7:08 a.m.: The band had been let into the fieldhouse, but the media and the public remain in line. People are starting to wonder when they'll get inside.

One White House security staff member said they want to only let a few in at a time due to security checks.

7:05 a.m.: Police stationed at Stimson are redirecting traffic due to the closed South State. So far, there aren't many traffic backups and vehicles are just heading toward South Industrial. Roads around Ann Arbor have a fairly heavy volume of traffic incidents due to the weather. Southbound US-23 between US-12 and Bemis is closed due to a crash.

7 a.m.: Doors haven't opened yet.

6:50 a.m.: U-M volunteers are managing the crowd, but there's not much to manage, people on site say. The line is snaking around the field to the south of the fieldhouse and people are just waiting for the doors to open.

6:40 a.m.: Who's first in line to see Obama? Teman Evans. And yes, he's the person who was first in line at the Michigan Union on Thursday to get tickets.

The lecturer at U-M's Taubman School taught from 1-5:30 Thursday, then headed to the Al Glick Fieldhouse by 6. He brought a down jacket, a cap and a little bag of oranges.

About 20 people joined him by midnight.

"We played games, we had all kinds of fun," he said. "It was a festive crowd."

His reason for his spot in the lines: He's an Obama supporter. "I want to get close so I can hear every word."

6:30 a.m.: State Street is closed, and there's heavy security near the fieldhouse at 1300 S. State. That's causing some rerouting of the pedestrians trying to reach the line: Police are directing people heading southbound down Hoover to Green.

The crowd estimate: 1,000.

6:15 a.m.: Ann Arbor's streets near the University of Michigan sports facilities looked more like a football Saturday than 6 a.m. on a weekday this morning as crowds of people made their way to the line to see President Barack Obama.

The temperature hovered near freezing and the sidewalks were covered with a dusting of snow, prompting the people who waited in line to seek shelter from rain gear and tarps and clutch coffee cups.

But the mood still sparked with excitement, people said.One of them was Molly Berlik, a student at U-M from Midland, who woke up at 5 a.m. to get to the Al Glick Fieldhouse before the doors opened at 7 a.m.

She's a member of the U-M Marching Band and among the 30 members of the basketball band selected to play for the president.

The playlist: "The Victors" and other U-M standards, thanks to copyright laws coming into play due to the plan to televise the speech.


Angela Cesere |

University of Michigan officials are encouraging people with tickets to show up by 7 a.m. If you get to the field house later than 9 a.m., you wont be let in, even if you have a ticket.

Word of Obama's speech and its focus on affordability leaked Monday. The speech is the president's second in Ann Arbor while in office. He spoke at the school's commencement on May 1, 2010.


The front of the line, as about 3,000 people will pass through the doors of Al Glick Fieldhouse this morning to see President Barack Obama speak at 9:30.

Melanie Maxwell |

Find details on the speech here.

Follow @Annarborcom, @kelliewoodhouse and #ObamaAA on Twitter for live updates. Send your event photos to

This story is reported by Paula Gardner, Janet Miller, Danny Shaw, Nathan Bomey, Angela Cesere and Melanie Maxwell.


People are staking out their positions in the fieldhouse, waiting for President Obama to speak at 9:30.

Angela Cesere |



Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 7:40 p.m.

Snivelization at it's finest on this thread.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 7:29 p.m.

Well, it was nice of him to stop through again as his one and only term is almost up.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 5:52 p.m.

Was something said that was new? If there was I must have missed it. Even if we confiscated the entire wealth of the 1%ers we still would only be able to pay the governments bills for less than two weeks. Then what? Maybe what we need is to elect an accountant to the presidency rather than a community organizer. The biggest problem we have going forward is going to be how to finance the government's liabilities. Unfortunately this may well fall on the shoulders of the very same students who are cheering the same speech that was already delivered once or twice before. Election year? yes. Swing state? You bet. Hope and change? I hope there's change that fell between the seat covers.

Buster W.

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:27 p.m.

Yeah, he's gone!!!


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:24 p.m.

I would have gone and tried to spread the message of liberty (and Ron Paul), and how to truly reduce the cost of education, but I was in class, doing my job. (maybe the prez should go back to Washington and do his) Can't be wasting absurd tuition money, and pay for a ticket to see this chump.

Terry Calhoun

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 5:48 p.m.

Your opinion of the president and his visit is as well-informed as your understanding that the tickets were not free.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:12 p.m.

Such a grand and exciting event for so many young students to have the opportunity to attend! President Obama is a charmer and I'm proud to have voted for him. GO BLUE!


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 7:26 p.m.

That's great if all you care about is charm. He hasn't managed to charm congress. Unfortunately as been shown by his term in office so far, its going to take more than charm to solve the serious issues we face.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:04 p.m.

Obama has been reduced to trumpeting on college campuses, inner cities, gay enclaves, and the union hall. Hardly a cross section of the 99%!


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 3:48 p.m.

I don't need no mama, I got Obama!!

Kai Petainen

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 3:31 p.m.

irony. obama mentioned about how teachers have a less lucrative career. how is it ironic? he's speaking at UofM.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:26 p.m.

College faculty here are not unionized. College job market is competitive. What's your excuse again?


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 3:25 p.m.

So Snyder decides not to show up. Very disrespectful.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 5:56 p.m.

Was he invited? I know I forgot.

Matt B

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:49 p.m.

Why on earth would the Governor come to a campaign speech? This visit has absolutely nothing to do with any legitimate presidential work. He's just here to shore up his student/faculty base (i.e. people who live in a fantasy world).

Terry Calhoun

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 3:13 p.m.

It would really be nice if people had to post here using their real identities. Would bring the level of discourse up a bit, I bet. How about it?

Kai Petainen

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 10:55 p.m.

fear. fear stops a lot of people from using real names. the fear of retaliation, the fear of saying the wrong thing. it's fear that can stop some of the best people from becoming leaders.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 5:58 p.m.

I'll run naked with a name banner if the FED releases transcripts of their cabal meetings.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:34 p.m.

So, wise lord helmet, you can bash other people, but what do you do to help our society? Do you have any solutions of your own?


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:10 p.m.'s clear that people on this site , and in the country/world at large, can truly hate each other ( no thanks to domestic political/media types--mostly but not exclusively on the teaparty side, some even presidential candidates .) and given the propensity of haters to violently act out, some degree of anonymity is preferable.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 3:23 p.m.

When will Obama? Will it be his real ID or his bogus birth certificate/social security number? If you want to worship that Chicago Shyster, have at it. The people who brought you the shake workout machine and Shamwow thank you!


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:58 p.m.

So he is giving a speech on the high cost of tuition to an audience of... wait for it...... mostly college students? I guess that's one way to maintain your "rock star" status, lol.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 9:31 p.m.

Don't be silly djacks, they said it was official White House business, not campaigning ~sarcasm~


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 7:20 p.m.

Just campaigning to the demographic that got him into office in the first place. Talk about sheep.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:50 p.m.

He's late. But TOTUS is there, and we all know POTUS says whatever TOTUS tells him to.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:59 p.m.

Obama is undisciplined when it comes to work since he does it so infrequently. This is just a campaign speech; more bs from the bs'er in chief.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:44 p.m.

Waiting in the rain is appropriate for Obama given the fact that he's "all wet".....

Emma B

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:30 p.m.

I realize this is and therefore Ann Arbor is the center of the universe-- but does anyone appreciate how rare it is for a president to visit the same relatively small city twice in one term? But then again I was told yesterday that I needed to realign my priorities despite expressing excitement for seeing both Republican and Democratic politicians in person. Even if you hate the man you are secretly having a great time-- his nearby presence gives you unlimited license to rant, rave, and cry "SOCIALIST!" from the rooftops while watching the youth around you bask in the glow of their own naive, uninformed adoration. Your mere presence here on this board is evidence it riles you up in one way or the other.

Mike S

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 10:36 p.m.

Well done, Miss B, it looks like you snagged three. :^)


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 6:02 p.m.

You need better mentors if you listen to people who tell you how to align your priorities.

4 Fingers

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:37 p.m.

Not when its full of rich liberals who vote.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:58 p.m.

Obama is not a president. He's a "present". As in voting "present".

John Smith

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:18 p.m.

Speaking at the University of Michigan regarding the affordability of higher education is more than ironic.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:25 p.m.

I guess he can blame the republicans for driving up the costs at that LIBERAL dominated institution. He never misses a chance to point a finger and attach blame for his own ilk's failed ideas and politics.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:12 p.m.

What a waste of time. When you've seen one BS Obama speech, you have literally seen them ALL. More bogus platitudes. Endless pontification.... fantasy laden rhetoric. The guy has blown $6T+ of our future's future and has nothing to show for it other than finger pointing. This is what you get when you send an empty suit to do a man's job. He's not qualified to be an Alderman in Chicago let alone President. If you stooges want to wait in the rain to hear his noise, more power to the providers of goods and services that you suckers obviously fall for. Perhaps you can dry yourself off with Sham Wow's and work off your inspiration using the "shake weight". PT Barnum was right... A liberal was born every minute.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:43 p.m.

No lugemanchine. I make up my own mind and unlike the Cult Members in that audience today, hanging on every teleprompter delivered word, I can "think". So go watch those pencil necks at MsNBC so that you aren't threatened by reality.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:29 p.m.

So... Fox News much?

G. Orwell

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:07 p.m.

Obama = Bush Both working to screw the American people on behald of his corporate masters.

Wolf's Bane

Sat, Jan 28, 2012 : 3:26 p.m.

Hahahahahahahaha.... NOT!


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 5:35 p.m.

so is blind fanaticism that does not allow for compromise or the strong possibility that the fanatic may be wrong.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:43 p.m.

Moral relativism is an intellectually lazy position, George.

Kai Petainen

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:53 p.m.

regardless of political views, i think it's cool to see the President come to Ann Arbor. cool stuff.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:52 p.m.

*8:04 - It's not anti-abortion, it's pro-life. Get it right. I don't ever hear you media types calling it pro-abortion.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:05 p.m.

no. it's 'anti abortion'. 'pro-life' would recognize the need for some sort of compassion for women/families in often difficult circumastances that don't have cookie cutter , one size/ one fanatical faith fits all solutions...and also recognizes that limitless population growth ( particularly when associated with a rapacious species) ==death for all .. which is itself a sort of' murder by deliberate ignorance of consequences" .

Jon Saalberg

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:11 p.m.

Huh, actually you have it backwards. Most of the time, the media does call it "pro-life", even though it is absolutely anti-abortion - you are against abortions, correct? And it is "pro-choice", if you believe women should be able to decide what to do with their own bodies, which you apparently do not believe. And isn't it ironic that men have made the decisions about what women should be able to do with their bodies? Not right.

Usual Suspect

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:59 p.m.

Even using that term would be nice. But I don't think the media will ever use the accurate term, which is "murder."


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:50 p.m.

They'd have to pay me to see HIM. Poor fools.

Freight Train

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:07 p.m.

HIM? His Imperial Majesty?

Wolf's Bane

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:58 p.m.

Why is that Diane?

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:43 p.m.

For those who mainline Faux Noise and who insist that the president has accomplished nothing: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> All of this with a Republican congressional delegation determine to cause him (and the nation, thereby) to fail. Want to discuss actual facts? Fine. But, to do that, one would have to acknowledge the facts in the link above. Republican T-partyers would rather live in a world devoid of facts yet full of ad hominem attacks (e.g., &quot;sheep&quot;) than actually employ facts in their argument. Good Night and Good Luck


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 8 p.m.

Please don't make us actually read something. It's so much easier to be a ditto head and/or parrot what we hear on Fox &quot;News&quot;. Besides, did you take look at that link?!? It's at least several pages long! The next thing you know, we might actually arrive at an informed opinion.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 7:17 p.m.

@Jeffersonian, Why is it that conservatives insist on piling Bush's last budget deficit into Obama's column? Is it that they don't understand the budget process, or is that they just can't make a case without makin' it up? The FY 2008-09 Budget was signed by Bush, took effect on Oct. 1, 2008, and ran a $1.9 Trillion deficit (the highest in US history). Obama executed this budget--as he had to--by law. It was not HIS budget. The FY 09-10 Budget ran a $1.6 Trillion deficit. The FY 10-11 Budget ran a 1.2 Trillion deficit. This year's deficit is projected at $1.1 Trillion, though that is likely to go down as the economy continues to improve, entitlement spending therefore goes down (e.g., food stamps and welfare) and revenues go up. And, yes, having saved GM, having saved Chrysler, having saved the banking system, having gotten us out of Iraq, having put us on a road to getting out of A-stan, I'm feeling a lot better than I was 3 three years ago.under Bush. Thanks for asking. And, just in case you're wondering what else he might have accomplished: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> Yup, looks like a pretty successful presidency compared to the messes, both domestic and international, that he inherited. GN&amp;GL


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 6:04 p.m.

My question is this- Do you feel better off than you did 7 trillion dollars ago?

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:44 p.m.

Thanks for making my point, lordhelmet. Truly appreciated. Please keep up the good work!!! GN&amp;GL


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:13 p.m.

Dear Keith. Nobody watches you on Current tv. Have you gotten out of your bathtub lately?


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:57 p.m.

You will never miss Usual Suspect, joe.blow, Diane, smokeblwr, etc in this kind of articles. Surprised not to see braggslaw here.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:55 p.m.

Republican propaganda machine is working non-stop this morning on this site. It almost feels desperate.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:35 p.m.

This is candidate Obama, a guy who delivers political rhetoric at its best, especially during election years,no doubt coming to Ann Arbor as a courtesey of Valerie Jarrett, J.D. UM '81. Certainly Coleman will consider this a great marketing opportunity for the U. One would hope that somewhere in the visit some real world questions would be raised during his visit like how come he appointed Larry Summers to his National Economist Council, a man who resigned from Harvard after a 2005 speech in which he suggested women do not have the same aptitude as men...on the high end in science and engineering. Summers has also supported deregulation of derivatives contracts and endorsed the Gram-Leech-Bliley Act which removed the separation between investment and commercial banks, this act gutted the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act and lifted restrictions that were an outcome of the Great Depression and the financial collapse that helped create the deepest recession in our American history. And then is Timothy Geithner, who supported the bank bail outs proposes to give banks new cash infusions with which to lend in exchange banks would cut executive salaries, perks, and sharply limit dividends and corporate acquisitions. Did we see this happen? Meanwhile A new report by The National Center on Family Homelessness finds that more than 1.6 million children - or one in 45 children - are homeless annually in America. This represents an increase of 38% during the years impacted by the economic recession. The report, America's Youngest Outcasts 2010, ranks the 50 states from best (1) to worst (50), and offers specific policy solutions. Read the full report and find out where your state ranks. I would hope, Ann Arbor being one of the smartest cities in the U.S. would be first to cut the rhetoric and begin a conversation not only with candidate Obama but all presidential candidates on how to move forward and govern this country to serve the remaining 99% of the population.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 3:54 p.m.

&quot;Ann Arborites are too smart to fall for Republican propaganda machine.&quot; I think you mean too intoxicated by the kool-aid to have common sense.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:09 p.m.

Ann Arborites are too smart to fall for Republican propaganda machine.

Usual Suspect

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:13 p.m.



Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:04 p.m.

What happened to you &quot;give up for the weekend&quot;? You obviously can't get enough of the live coverage.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:09 p.m.

Obamacare!! AHHH!!! He's going to take my gun and his wife will make me eat healthy food! Did you know he's a secrect Muslin?


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:20 p.m.

He's a secret type of fabric?


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:05 p.m.

Welcome back, President Obama!!


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 12:24 p.m.

I miss George W Bush.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 6:08 p.m.

Don't worry GW is riding in the back of the same clown car. His foot is stuck on the emergency brake.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4:04 p.m.

Given that Obama's presidency has been largely an extension or escalation of Bush administration policies, I'm not sure why &quot;conservatives&quot; are complaining, or even why &quot;liberals&quot; embrace him.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 4 p.m.

i know what ya mean...i miss my infected tonsils, ruptured appendix, and impacted wisdom teeth. Health sucks.


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:16 p.m.

And Joh, obviously you missed Obama's escalation of the &quot;endless&quot; and pointless war in inwinnable Afghanistan, his idiotic assistance in putting Islamists in charge of Egypt, his illegal military actions in Libya, and his utter fiscal irresponsibility. I know he's &quot;black&quot;, or at least pretends to be, but you really need to get past your racism and see Obama for what he is; an empty suit, huckster, and destructive force against this nation.

Jon Saalberg

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 2:08 p.m.

Yeah, I guess you miss an endless war and pointless U.S. soldier deaths, and a foundering U.S. economy. The rest of us don't miss those things.

Wolf's Bane

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:57 p.m.

Yeah, sometimes its just no fun being on the path of recovery or finally being respected again in the theater of World politics!?


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : noon

Something struck me as being very funny seeing those in the front of the line covering their heads in plastic bags waiting to see the President. (yes, I know the weather is bad and it's plastic's still a humorous image.)


Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 6:12 p.m.

That's the new dormitory, funny maybe but cost efficient.

Emma B

Fri, Jan 27, 2012 : 1:57 p.m.

I think it's the girl facing the camera-- she looks so happy under the sheet of plastic.