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Actress Alfre Woodard shares the business on President Obama

October 1, 2012 by  
Filed under Conversation

by Kimberly Bailey-Tureaud

Alfre Woodard

We know you have been on the campaign trail for President Obama, but what are some of your current projects?
On Oct. 7, I have a Lifetime Television remake of “Steel Magnolias” coming out with Queen Latifah, Phylicia Rashad, and Jill Scott. Also, I will be doing a role on the hit series “The Practice.”

You have been very busy with President Obama’s re-election campaign, and we know you are fired up.
I am absolutely fired up, because I have never cooled off. I have been in President Obama’s corner the whole time — starting when he announced his candidacy, all the way through his first term as the president of the United States. His commitment to work hard for the American people has never wavered. Nevada is a very important state in this election, which can actually tilt the country forward. We are moving forward for President Obama’s re-election.

Four years ago, there was great enthusiasm for Barack Obama to become president of the United States. Do you see that same enthusiasm this time around?

We should be enthused, because President Obama stopped our freefall when he became president four years ago. We were in a devastating freefall as a country. He has worked hard every single day on behalf of all Americans. He did it with one hand tied behind his back, with an openly disloyal opposition. Political leaders stood up in front of the Capitol building and said they wanted President Obama’s administration to fail. With millions of Americans in dire straits, suffering while trying to make ends meet, for them to use their political muscle to try and sink the policies of President Obama shows that they don’t care about their fellow Americans. So, I think we all have to stand up, because he showed up for us. He has gotten more done in these three-and-a-half years in office than any other president in history. His opposition wants to promote lie after lie that he has done nothing. On the contrary, it’s all there in the record of his accomplishments. The first law he signed was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a bill that targets the wage gap between men and women — because women were making 70 cents to the dollar less than men, and women of color make 60 cents to the dollar less than men. I talk about women, because when women move forward, the whole family moves forward. You have to love a president whose policies protect, uplift and pay women.

Everyone talks about the economy right now — what would you say to that?
I would say that President Obama revived the auto industry, and saved millions of people who would have been affected by that crash. Hundreds of thousands of people benefited from what President Obama did for the auto industry. We now have “Obamacare” that provides health care to millions of people. I don’t know how people can say President Obama has done nothing in his first term. The only thing he has done is move this country forward.

What do you think President Obama has done to positively impact employment?
President Obama has continued growth in terms of the job market for the entire time he has been in office. He understands that small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, and he has helped 150,000 small businesses — a lot of them minority-owned businesses. He assisted them in getting small business loans, which helped them hire more people and sustain their businesses. In Nevada alone, there are 8,600 African-Americans who own small businesses. He has cut taxes for these business owners, having a direct impact on our economy. Our president has ensured that our children can get a higher education, by implementing student loan reform and [protecting] Pell Grants. This protects the future of our country, when our children are able to go to college and can be competitive in our global society.

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