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Russell Simmons endorses Obama for president

March 3, 2008

NEW YORK (AP) — Russell Simmons has been pushing young people to vote, but for a while there, it was looking as if the music industry heavyweight would have trouble casting his own ballot.

Not anymore.

The hip-hop mogul said Sunday he is endorsing Barack Obama for president, inspired by the diversity among the Illinois senator’s supporters. Obama has built an unprecedented national movement of people from all ethnic, racial, political, social and economic backgrounds, Simmons said in a news release.

It was a little more than a year ago that Simmons, the co-founder of Def Jam Recordings who says he’s an independent who has supported Democrats and Republicans, sounded as if he was having a hard time deciding.

“If you could take Barack Obama’s image, add Hillary Rodham Clinton’s money and John Edwards’ voice, that would be my candidate,” Simmons said in January 2007.

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