Re-electing President Barack Obama is the only way to help cities like Easton, Mayor Sal Panto told local Democrats Thursday.
Panto was speaking at the grand opening for the campaign's office on Larry Holmes Drive, which will serve as headquarters for the Easton area, Nazareth area, and the Slate Belt.
Speaking to several dozen people in the parking lot of the former Ringside building, Panto recalled "inheriting" Easton at a time of economic hardship.
"I can't imagine what President Obama felt when he inherited the United States of America," in the midst of even greater turmoil, the mayor said, arguing that the election is a choice between Obama and candidates "who want to reward recklessness, not responsibility."
Visitors -- many of whom were volunteers from Obama's first campaign -- also heard from City Councilwoman Sandra Vulcano, who spoke of local Democrats' , on the city, school board and county level.
A few people wandered the crowd handing out fliers criticizing Obama on a range of issues, from continuing the Bush administration's rendition program, to into law. The National Defense Autorization Act greatly expands the federal government's power to fight terrorism, including provisions that allow the military to detain citizens indefinitely, without trial.
"There are more than two political parties and more than two presidential campaigns," the fliers said.