Barack Obama doesn't just want your vote, he wants your service.
The presumptive Democratic candidate will outline his plan to boost national service and volunteering in a speech today in the battleground state of Colorado, according to a statement from his campaign.
The speech was scheduled to begin at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs shortly after 1 p.m. EST.
Specifically, Obama aims to:
-- Encourage national service to address the great challenges of our time, including combating climate change, extending health care, improving our schools and strengthening America overseas by showing the world the best of our nation.
-- Expand AmeriCorps to 250,000 slots and double the size of the Peace Corps.
-- Integrate service-learning into our schools and universities to enable students to graduate college with as many as 17 weeks of service experience under their belts.
-- Provide new service opportunities for working Americans and retirees.
-- Expand service initiatives that engage disadvantaged young people and advance their education.
-- Expand the capacity of nonprofits to innovate and expand successful programs across the country.
-- Enable more Americans to serve in the armed forces.
UPDATE: McCain's campaign took note of Obama's nod to military service to chide the Democrat for recent remarks by his surrogates that appeared to denigrate McCain's own service as a qualification to be president.
“It was refreshing to hear Barack Obama laud military service in his speech today. We hope this will be the tone we hear from him, his campaign and his surrogates from now on,” said Brian Rogers, McCain's spokesman, in a statement.
For its part, Obama's campaign also took the opportunity to rip John McCain's visit to Latin America in support of free trade agreements.
"Senator McCain's trip to Mexico and Colombia just underscores his insistence on continuing George Bush's failed economic policies that have left nearly 2.5 million more workers unemployed—including unfair trade deals that have been written by lobbyists," the statement read.
McCain arrived in Cartegena, Colombia, yesterday evening and met with the country's president. Today, the presumptive Republican nominee's schedule called for a port tour to view the country's antidrug efforts, before departing to Mexico City.
"Drugs is a big, big problem in America. The continued flow of drugs from Colombia through Mexico into the United States is still one of our major challenges for all Americans," McCain told ABC's "Good Morning America" today in an interview from Cartagena. Read the Associated Press report on McCain's visit.
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.