Lady Gaga, car horns trumpet Biden’s grand campaign finale

Pittsburgh – Honking horns, huge American flags and pop superstar Lady Gaga.

On the eve of the presidential election, Joe Biden brought an air of spectacle to workers’ stronghold Pittsburgh as he capped a campaign largely curtailed by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

“The power’s in your hands, Pennsylvania!” the Democratic White House nominee thundered late Monday to several hundred supporters gathered for a drive-in rally in what has become the pivotal state in Biden’s battle against President Donald Trump. 

“It’s time to stand up and take back our democracy,” the 77-year-old added, prompting a crescendo of car horns outside the stadium that is home to the Pittsburgh Steelers American football team.

In the biting November cold, Biden took up the clarion call of a campaign that he launched 18 months ago: “This is a battle for the soul of America. We have to win this.” 

Lady Gaga, clad in a white sweatshirt with “Joe” printed on the front, listened and applauded from her stage. 
Minutes earlier, she had peeled off her gloves and sat down at a white piano to give a short but inspired musical warm-up to the Biden headliner. 

“Gloves off because it’s a fight – a fight for what you believe in,” she said, before launching into her hit song Shallow.

The 34-year-old Grammy winner called on the audience to vote for Biden because “we needed somebody that was going to bring us all together for this moment, for this very important moment”.

“No matter who wins tomorrow, we’re going to have to do this together. Tomorrow’s got to be peaceful,” she added sombrely, in an allusion to the tensions that have swelled in the US ahead of the poll. 

The singer, who once lived in Pennsylvania, has been in this position before.

 In 2016, she helped close out the campaign of Democrat Hillary Clinton, who lost in a shocker to Trump. - AFP