Former Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Visits WCU for Obama Campaign

Ray Mabus paid a visit to the Catamount Room in the UC on Tuesday April 29, 2008. Mabus is a senior political adviser for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign. Mabus was elected Govenor of Mississippi in 1988, a position he held until 1992 when he was appointed United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia by former president Bill Clinton. He served at our Embassy in Riyadh from 1994 to 1996. While Mabus was Ambassador he helped diffuse Saudi border disputes with both Yemen and Iraq. While under Mabus’ leadership, the embassy weathered a terrorist attack in 1995. During his tenure in Riyadh, the Saudis agreed to drop the boycott against the U. S. businesses that trade with Israel. Currently, Mabus is currently working for the presidential campaign of Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill). The purpose of Mabus’ visit to our campus was to drum up support for Senator Obama before our state’s primary on May sixth. “Barack Obama hasn’t been in Washington long enough to be corrupted by the Washington mindset. If you want to know what kind of president Senator Obama will be, just look at his campaign for president.” Mabus said that Obama’s grassroots strategy has turned a primary that has traditionally been decided by about eight states into an election that requires a decision from at least forty states. “Education, Health Care, an end to foreign oil dependence, this is just the top of a long list of issues facing our next president. Barack hasn’t been indoctrinated into the Washington mindset that puts corporate interest above that of the people.” “Senator Obama represents a powerful force for positive change in this country. Barack is the candidate who can reach across the socio-political divide that has impeded progress in the past.” Mabus said in his speech Tuesday. “I support Senator Obama first and foremost because he stands for change.”