By Ken Stone
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Only 750 tickets are said to be available for an “invitation-only” rally Saturday featuring Barack Obama in rare campaign mode.
Thursday night, via Twitter, @CA_Dem said “Fired up?” It posted a smiling Obama with the invitation “Join Barack Obama in Orange County” and the instruction to “text ‘Barack’ to 97779 for your chance to win.”
That came amid begging for tickets.
Said one @POTUS44 fan on Twitter: “Anyone get tickets to see Obama in Anaheim or are we all just going to stand outside and wave at him?”
Said another: “OBAMA IS GOING TO BE AT THE ANAHEIM CONVENTION CENTER THIS SATURDAY WHO TRYNA GO ???”
And a third tweeted: “The Democratic campaigns will be distributing the tickets according to the OC Register” but complained: “I wish we, the supporters had been notified.”
Despite media reports that local congressional campaigns would control precious tickets, a representative of 49th District candidate Mike Levin — seeking the Rep. Darrell Issa-vacated seat — said his office didn’t have tix.
“The event is being hosted by the national party. So local groups/campaigns are unlikely to have much info” on tickets, said the spokesman. “You’ll have to reach out to the DCCC directly.”
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee didn’t immediately respond to a request for details.On Friday, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Orange County noted the “text-to-win opportunity” but added: “This event was produced by the DCCC and the Obama team with very little public notice because of security concerns. The Democratic Party of Orange County was not part of the planning team.”
Caryn Puma, the spokeswoman, said Saturday’s rally otherwise has no publicly available seats.
“There will be no tickets given at the door,” she said. “Each of the seven ‘hot’ congressional campaigns got an allotment of tickets for their volunteers, and a slim handful were given to the four [Southern California] county parties.”
The demand is potentially huge. In 2012, 512,440 Orange County residents voted for Obama — behind Mitt Romney’s 582,332.
The Obama rally on behalf of seven California Democrats, including Levin in North San Diego County, was set to begin at 10 a.m. and last until after 1, according to media reports.
It’s set for the 7,560-square-foot Ballroom E on the convention center’s third floor, which has a listed capacity of 756.
Outside, at least one group is planning a protest.
A unit called “Keep Orange Red” posted an event on Facebook titled “Protest Commies And Obama” at 9 a.m. at the 800 W. Katella Avenue center.
“It is time once again to fight the good fight,” said a Keep Orange Red rep via Facebook Messenger. “Please post Orange County Republican support meetings and events.”
According to the Orange County Registrar of Voters Office, Republicans outnumber Democrats in the formerly ultraconservative county 534,027 to 501,950.
Updated at 3:40 p.m. Sept. 7, 2018
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