On election day, Obama hits the airwaves (Extra)
Nov 2, 2010, 20:30 GMT
Washington - In a last-ditch effort to get out the vote Tuesday, US President Barack Obama gave a slew of radio interviews, including one to American Idol host Ryan Seacrest, targeted at youth voters.
'I want everyone to remember that you can't shape your future if you don't participate,' Obama said on Seacrest's syndicated show. 'You've got to get out there and vote. Young people all across this country are going to make the difference. Not just now, but in the future.'
Two years after his triumphal election as the first black leader of the United States, Obama and his Democratic Party were bracing for major losses in mid-term legislative elections Tuesday.
While Obama's schedule on election day largely comprised closed- door meetings at the White House, he did give interviews to radio stations in Chicago, Jacksonville, Los Angeles and Las Vegas.
Asked what he would do if Republicans gained control of Congress, Obama told Chicago's WGCI radio, a hip-hop and R&B station, that 'my hope is that I can cooperate with Republicans.'
He added, however, that 'obviously the kinds of compromises that will be made will depend on what Capitol Hill looks like, who's in charge.'
'If we've got Republicans in control of the House that means that they will want to dictate the terms of those compromises,' Obama said.
'I need everyone to turn out to the polls today. You can make a difference today. And how well I'm able to move my agenda forward over the next couple of years is going to depend in part on folks back home having my back,' the president told his hometown listeners.
Obama told KVEG radio in Las Vegas that he was confident of a good turnout, but wanted a great turnout.
'If you look at Nevada, every poll shows the race between Harry Reid and his opponent is neck and neck. And so we know that if the people who voted in 2008 turn out to vote in 2010 Harry will win, and if they don't turn out he will lose,' Obama said of the embattled Senate majority leader.
'If I don't have Harry Reid in the US Senate, it's going to be hard to keep making improvements,' Obama said.
With hip-hop music playing in the background, Obama acknowledged in his interview with KPWR in Los Angeles the difference made by 'a lot of young people in 2008 who voted for the first time.'
'Across the board things have gotten better over the last two years - the question is can we keep that up?' Obama said. 'But we can only keep that up if I've got some friends and allies in Congress ...
'Even though my name is not on the ballot, my agenda is going to be dependent, our agenda is going to be dependent on whether or not folks turn out and vote.'
All 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 37 seats in the 100-member Senate are up for grabs as well as governorships and many state and local positions.
Polling suggests Republicans are highly likely to gain more than the 39 seats they need to reclaim a majority in the lower House, with the support of independent voters who put Obama in office two years ago.
Control of the Senate is less certain, but likely to remain in the hands of Democrats, who have held majorities in both chambers of Congress since 2006.
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