Obama camp: Bank of America Stadium, ‘rain or shine’

Olivier Knox
The Ticket

Bring your ponchos. President Barack Obama will formally accept the Democratic nomination on Thursday outdoors in Bank of America Stadium, "rain or shine," his re-election campaign manager said Tuesday.

"Look, you know, we're going to have a convention out there rain or shine—unless we're putting people at risk," Jim Messina told an ABC/Yahoo News roundtable on the sidelines of the Democratic National Convention.

"And we'll continue to monitor the weather, but, you know, rain or shine we hope to be out there," he said. Speculation has mounted that Democrats could move Obama's big speech indoors, both because of the prospect of heavy rains and because of the challenge of filling the stadium's 73,778 seats.

"I think that there is a lot of excitement and enthusiasm for Thursday night and I don't think we'll have a hard time filling it," said deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter.

The Obama campaign also dismissed talk that Democrats were embarrassed about holding the big event in a stadium named for a big bank—an unpopular reminder of the Wall Street bailout.

"Look, we're renting a stadium. We're paying a stadium authority to rent a facility like we do all over the country. You know, I think people understand the difference," said Messina.

"You know, it might be embarrassing to hold an event there if you supported repealing Wall Street reform," quipped Obama campaign national press secretary Ben LaBolt, referring to Mitt Romney.

"It might be embarrassing for Gov. Romney to hold an event there, but we're looking forward to the opportunity to have 65,000 of our supporters in the stadium," he added. (65,000? Sounds like the stadium may not be full after all.)