Bruce Springsteen, Madonna Perform for Hillary Clinton in Waning Hours of Campaign

Ted Johnson
Variety

Hillary Clinton enlisted Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi to perform before tens of thousands gathered at Philadelphia’s Independence Mall on Monday, as she rallied voters in the penultimate event of her presidential campaign.

They were joined by Clinton, former President Bill Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama.

“We don’t want to shrink the vision of this country; we want to keep expanding it,” Hillary Clinton said, in a speech that emphasized the inclusiveness of her campaign in contrast to the divisiveness of rival Donald Trump’s rhetoric.

Making his first his appearance for her campaign, Springsteen said,  “The choice tomorrow couldn’t be any clearer.” He sang “Thunder Road,” “Long Walk Home” and “Dancing in the Dark.”

He said that Clinton’s candidacy was based on “an actual vision,” while her rival Donald Trump is a man “whose vision is limited to little beyond himself.”

“Tomorrow, Trump’s campaign and his ideas are going down.”

He performed for Barack Obama in his 2008 and 2012 campaigns, as well as for John Kerry.

In brief remarks, Springsteen made a reference to the type of working class economic issues that are at the heart of so much of his music.

“Hillary sees an America where the issue of income distribution should be at the heart of the national conversation,” he said. “Where the progress we made in reducing unemployment is not enough. We much do better. She has a vision of universal healthcare for all that will build on the work of President Obama.”

Bon Jovi has been a frequent presence on the campaign trail for Clinton, and at the rally he said that she has “proven to be a unifier.”

President Obama, who has been on a blitz of campaigning for Clinton, also contrasted her with Trump, telling the crowd that he was “betting that tomorrow you will reject fear and choose hope.”

Clinton “will work and deliver. She won’t just tweet,” he said.

Around the same time as the Philadelphia rally, Madonna held an impromptu performance at Washington Square Park in New York for Clinton, which was broadcast on Facebook Live. She urged those gathered to “vote with your hearts. Vote with your spirits. Vote with your should.” She sang “Imagine,” “Like a Prayer” and “If I Had a Hammer.”

“Do you believe in the power of unity? Do you believe in the power of prayer? Do you believe in the power of love? Amen,” she said.

She also quipped, “Let’s hope I get invited to the White House this time.” She noted that she never got one under the presidency of Barack Obama.

Clinton is wrapping up her campaign with a midnight rally in Raleigh, N.C., where she will be joined again by Bon Jovi, Lady Gaga and Samantha Ronson.

At one of his final rallies in New Hampshire, Trump took note of Clinton’s celebrity support, and even called it “demeaning” to the political process, as he did on Saturday. But he also noted that Tom Brady told him earlier in the day that he would vote for him, and he read a letter from Bill Belichick, general manager of the New England Patriots, congratulating him on the campaign. “You have dealt with an unbelievable and slanted media and have come out beautifully,” Trump read.

Update: At Trump’s final rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., Ted Nugent performed what he called a “Hillary Clinton” version of the National Anthem, in which he simply made sheep noises and said, “Gimme. Gimme. Gimme.”

A short while later, in Raleigh, N.C., Lady Gaga spoke, telling the crowd of Clinton, “No matter how absurd and mean he became, she smiled bravely,” she said. “…We watched her endorse such hateful language with dignity.”

Trump opened his rally by saying, “We don’t need Jay Z or Beyonce. We don’t need Jon Bon Jovi. We don’t need Lady Gaga.”

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