Grammy award-winning singer John Legend speaks at a Democratic Get out the Vote event at George Washington Carver High School in Cleveland on Sunday. (Hannah Drown, cleveland.com) (Hannah Drown)
CLEVELAND, Ohio – Grammy award-winning singer John Legend closed Sunday’s lively rally in Cleveland in song after encouraging Ohioans to vote, preserve democracy and stand up for the will of the people.
But Legend was far from the only one. Democratic candidates U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, Richard Cordray and Betty Sutton and even a drum line all took the stage during the Get out the Vote rally.
Legend ended his speech by singing a line from grammy-winning song “Glory.”
Watch the video below to see a portion of the rally from cleveland.com’s Facebook page.
Attendees inside George Washington Carver High School’s gymnasium got on their feet when Brown took the stage urging voters to make their way to the polls on Tuesday. He urged people to vote for Cordray for Ohio governor and stressed the impact this election will make on the state.
“We really, really, really need you,” Brown said.
Betty Sutton, the Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Ohio, opened with stories of her childhood as the youngest of six siblings and why she dedicated her life to standing up for families.
She spoke a lot on the future and the work that needs to be done in the state.
“We will send a message across this country that we are back on track,” Sutton said.
Next up was Eric Holder, former U.S. Attorney General, who primarily focused on healthcare, the economy and the necessity to vote.
Throughout his speech he spoke on gerrymandering and voter suppression, saying Democrats want as many people as possible to vote, while Republicans want to make it harder to vote.
“They want to keep people away from the polls because they fear the very people who they say they want to lead,” Holder said.
And he urged the crowd to think about the sacrifices made to get where we are, and to show up at the polls regardless of cold, rain or other obstacles.
“We have to show up and we have to vote,” Holder said. “If we vote, we win, it’s as simple as that.”
It was then time for Cordray to take the stage.
He began by noting the urgency and lack of time before the election is over in a close race with Republican candidate Mike DeWine.
“We have races that are basically tied and your effort is what can push us across the finish line,” said Cordray.
He referenced topics such as clean energy, protecting the environment, criminal justice reform, gun violence, equal rights, women’s rights and healthcare.
“It’s about a choice between the past and the future in Ohio. And we are with the future,” Cordray said. “Betty Sutton and I stand for stepping into our future in Ohio.”
The rally closed with Legend, an Ohio native who spent the day stumping for Democrats in Cleveland, Cincinnati and Dayton.
“I had to come here because I care about the future of this state, I care about the future of this country and I could not sit at home on a Sunday afternoon and relax when we’ve got so much important work to do,” said Legend, who was born in Springfield near Dayton.
Speaking to and with the crowd, he covered topics such as tax cuts for wealthy, affordable and accessible healthcare, livable minimum wage, sensible gun laws and criminal justice reform.
“I came here because I have hope. I know the people of Ohio are good people who care about their neighbors and their communities,” Legend said. “I know the people of Ohio are hungry for change. I know the people of Ohio won’t let the voices of exclusion and cynicism win.”