With a little over a week left until the presidential election, "Extra's" Mario Lopez caught up with Barack Obama, who opened up about the Jennifer Hudson tragedy, his grandmother's health -- and why Latinos should vote for him.
Obama shares his community with the Oscar-winning "Dreamgirl" and her family -- and is trying to make sense of the tragedy that left Jennifer Hudson's mother and brother dead. "It was heartbreaking -- in fact, I'm still trying to get a phone number to call her at this tragic time," said Barack. "She is somebody who has campaigned for me, and she also lives in my community. So, we're really going to have to help her and pray for her and her family during this difficult time.
The democrat recently took a two-day hiatus from the campaign trail to visit his ill grandmother in Hawaii -- and opened up about her health. "You know she's not doing well, she's ailing, but her spirits have been good...she's lived a full life and obviously she's been watching the election with great interest and watching it on CNN," said the senator. "So, it was important for me to make sure that I saw her, because she was really one of the three people who helped raise me when I was a kid."
Despite his grandmother's condition, she encouraged him to get back to the race Obama says she told him, "Just don't make too much of a fuss about me...just go and finish doing what you need to do."
When Lopez asked Barack why Latinos should back him in the election, Obama responded, "Well you know, I think the values of family and community and neighborhood have really been diminished in this economy where people are losing their homes, where people are losing jobs. It's hard to afford sending your kid to college and one of things that we've been trying to fight for is that everybody gets an opportunity."
He continues, "The Latino community, I think, is an inspirational community...doesn't want things for free...works hard. It's a community that's filled with strivers and I just want to make sure that hard work is rewarded and that's not what's happening right now -- we need change."
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