President Barack Obama’s planned Wednesday visit to USF was canceled after Gov. Rick Scott issued a state of emergency in Florida in response to the approach of Category 4 Hurricane Matthew.
Obama was scheduled to talk about the Affordable Care Act. The talk was scheduled for 1:30 p.m. at the Campus Recreation Center East Gym. The visit would have closed down Campus Rec, the Champions Choice dining hall and parking lots 22A, 22D, Lot 6 and Lot 15, according to University Communications.
“Normal campus operations are expected on Wednesday,” Adam Freeman, university spokesman, said.
As for any campus closures due to Hurricane Matthew, Freeman said he was not aware of any at this point.
Susan MacManus, national political analyst and USF political science professor, said she wasn’t surprised by the cancellation and thinks most people would understand that the declaration of the state of emergency was the right decision.
“You don’t ever want to interfere with a disaster,” she said.
She said she doesn’t think the cancellation will have much of an effect on the purpose of the event, which she said was about rallying millennial voters for Hillary Clinton and sharing the success of the Tampa area in getting people to sign up for health care through Obama’s plan. MacManus said she thinks the president will reschedule and come to campus in the future.
“Obviously people understand that natural disasters … are more important than a presidential contest, at least in the short term,” she said.