“He looks like Obama, no?” Michailov said of her son, Alex. “I tell him he can one day be president. It’s so important for his self-confidence to see an African American elected to the highest office.”
On the California tour, beginning with a town hall meeting in Costa Mesa on Wednesday, Obama sought platforms to advance his economic policies as well as his proposed $3.6-trillion budget. Obama visited the Electric Vehicle Technical Center in Pomona and the Miguel Contreras Learning Complex in Los Angeles on Thursday before stopping off in Burbank.
“I feel really lucky for the opportunity to be here,” said Freddy Yassine, who drove 360 miles from Avondale, Ariz., with his parents. “The whole time, my dad kept saying that this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that we’ll never forget.”
Freddy, 16, applied for tickets to the show last month and was told to choose from a list of dates. The family selected Thursday because it coincided with his spring break.
“I looked at the schedule last week and saw that [World Wrestling Entertainment’s] John Cena was scheduled for [Thursday],” Freddy said. “We lucked out with Obama.”
As the audience filed into the studio, a small group of protesters after the president’s attention formed outside. A dozen members of the Screen Actors Guild, locked in a stalemate with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, which represents a coalition of studios, waved signs that read “Give SAG A Fair Deal.” Then there were those who sought an audience with the president.