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Opinion

Obama: Democrats must take back the word 'freedom' from Republicans

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Charlie Spiering,Barack Obama

During his speech to Democrats on Friday evening, President Obama pointed out that it was the Democrats, not Republicans that should own the word "freedom."

"As Democrats, we've let the other side define the word 'freedom' for too long," he said, as the crowd applauded.

During his speech, Obama explained that the true meaning of freedom was not just one's freedom to act as he wished, but rather the freedom from experiencing economic pressure.

Freedom, he insisted, was about having health insurance.

"Freedom is the peace of mind of knowing that if you got sick, you won't lose everything," he stated. "Freedom is the ability to change jobs and start a new business, chase a new idea without fear of losing your health insurance."

Obama also defined freedom in terms of Americans understanding and living with financial debt.

"Freedom is signing for that new home and knowing it can’t be taken from you because you actually understand what you're signing," he said. "Freedom is getting that new credit card and knowing the stakes and understanding how you're going to manage it; enrolling in college and knowing what you’ll owe once you graduate."

Obama went on to frame the word "freedom" in the immigration reform debate.

"Freedom is the knowledge that your future in this country is secure; you’re not going to be treated like a second-class person once we fix our broken immigration system. That's freedom," he said.

As the crowd applauded, Obama applied the word "freedom" to the gay rights movement.

"Freedom is the ability to go into a store or a restaurant without the fear that you’d be refused service because of who you are or who you love," he concluded.

"So we're not ceding that word," Obama said vowing that Democrats would stand for "freedom for ordinary Americans to honestly pursue their dreams."

"That's the choice we face right now -- opportunity for a few, or opportunity for all," he explained.

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