President Barack Obama has been traversing the country trying to sell his jobs package to voters, but on Monday attempted a more direct route: He told a room including black media outlets to be sure to "pump this up" to their readers.
According to Politico, Obama made a "surprise appearance" at a White House question-and-answer session aimed specifically at the administration's policies and their effect on the black community. The White House listed several black news organizations that were in attendance, including News One, Hello Beautiful, Black Planet, The Urban Daily and Grio.
"I want you guys to pump this up," Obama said, prompting a few laughs from the crowd. "No, look, we are in a critical juncture here. I’ve been fighting for two-and-a-half years to get through this economic storm, and we have stabilized...but the unemployment rate is still too high, and too many people are still hurting."
Obama predicted there would be "enormous resistance" to his proposal and said the voices of the American people need to be heard for it to pass.
"I need people to be out there promoting this and pushing this and making sure that everyone understands the details of what this would mean," Obama said.
Politico reported that after Obama left, White House adviser Valerie Jarrett said, "When the president heard we were here, [he said this was] another important audience for me to deliver my message to."