Skip to: Content
Skip to: Site Navigation
Skip to: Search

Bruce Springsteen rocks out for Barack Obama

Rock star Bruce Springsteen will perform at an Obama campaign rally with Bill Clinton in Ohio next week. The race has tightened considerably in that important swing state, and Springsteen's appearance is designed to bolster Obama's image as a fighter for working class men and women.

By Staff writer / October 13, 2012

In this 2008 photo, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on stage with his wife and daughters, hugs Bruce Springsteen at a rally in Cleveland, Ohio. Springsteen is hitting the campaign trail again on Obama's behalf, and he'll be joined by former President Bill Clinton at a rally in Parma, Ohio, on Thursday.

Alex Brandon/AP


Rocker Bruce Springsteen may be Republican New Jersey Gov. (and Mitt Romney campaign surrogate) Chris Christie’s musical idol. Gov. Christie claims to have been to 130 of “The Boss’s” concerts going back to the 70s.

Skip to next paragraph

But the feeling between the two New Jersey notables is not mutual, and next week in Parma, Ohio, Mr. Springsteen will be rocking out for Barack Obama. Ohio, of course, is a key battleground state; no Republican has ever won the presidency without taking Ohio.

The Obama/Biden team has been emphasizing its fight for the working middle class, and that’s certainly been Springsteen’s philosophical and political soul ground over the decades.

His work for progressive causes and Democratic candidates goes back to 1972 when he did a benefit for George McGovern. In 2009, he and folk icon/rabble rouser Pete Seeger performed Woody Guthrie’s classic “This Land is Your Land” at Barack Obama’s inaugural celebration at the Lincoln Memorial.

Obama campaign officials are delighted.

"Bruce Springsteen's values echo what the President and Vice President stand for: hard work, fairness, integrity," campaign manager Jim Messina said in a statement. "His appearances will help with our get-out-the-vote effort in these critical swing states and we are thrilled with his ongoing support."

As The Hill newspaper points out, Springsteen’s song “We Take Care of Our Own,” which appears on his 2012 album “Wrecking Ball,” has been a staple at Obama rallies, and was played at the close of Obama’s acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention.

Earlier this year, it seemed unlikely that Springsteen would work on behalf of Obama again this year as he did in 2008.

“I prefer to stay on the sidelines,” he reportedly told an interviewer. “I genuinely believe an artist is supposed to be the canary in the coal mine, and you’re better off with a certain distance from the seat of power.”


Read Comments

View reader comments | Comment on this story

  • Weekly review of global news and ideas
  • Balanced, insightful and trustworthy
  • Subscribe in print or digital

Special Offer


Election blogs



More coverage  (View all)

In pictures

Become a fan! Follow us! Google+ YouTube See our feeds!