TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - President Obama is calling on Americans to avoid partisan bickering and embrace the idealistic vision of democracy held by 9-year-old Christina Taylor Green.
The girl was the youngest of the six people killed and 13 injured Saturday in a shooting rampage as a crowd waited to meet Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. A funeral is planned for Christina this afternoon.
Speaking to a Tucson arena packed with 14,000 people last night, Obama reminded the audience that the third-grader's neighbor had brought Christina, a newly elected student council member, to meet Giffords because of her budding interest in democracy.
He said she saw politics "through the eyes of a child, undimmed by the cynicism or vitriol" that adults "all too often just take for granted." Obama said he wants to "live up to her expectations" and for America's democracy "to be as good as Christina imagined it."