President Obama speaks at University of Richmond

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Less than 24 hours after addressing the nation, President Obama brought his jobs creation plan to Richmond. He began his speech at about 11:35 a.m. at the University of Richmond and wrapped up right at noon before a crowd of more than 8,000.

He was urging voters to get behind his new jobs bill and pressure lawmakers to pass it, delivering the message on the home turf of one of his chief GOP antagonists.

A day after presenting the nearly $450 billion plan before a joint session of Congress, Obama chose the Virginia congressional district of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Friday as his first stop to rally public support behind the plan.

He told thousands of enthusiastic supporters at the University of Richmond that their voices will make a difference in getting the plan through a divided Congress. And the president said he was pleased that Cantor and other Republicans had indicated openness to his proposals. Obama said he was optimistic that pressured by voters, Congress would do the right thing.

The President arrived at RIC at about 10:30 a.m. and has been taken by motorcade to the University of Richmond campus where thousands of people are eager to hear him speak.

It's pretty much like airport security at the University of Richmond. In fact, things are so tight we can't even be inside the Robins Center because one of our NBC12 crew is going through a security sweep there right now.

The campus has been abuzz since 4 a.m. and the line has been around the building most of the morning as people are eager to hear President Barack Obama speak. Earlier this week we broke the news that the president would be speaking here on the campus.

Since then, crews have been getting the Robins Center ready for the president. And a lot of security measures have been put in place.  The Secret Service has been working with police from campus, as well as Richmond and Henrico police and the CIA.

Also, off campus, VDOT shut off 10 of its camera's along interstates 64 and 95 when the president is in town.

If you're coming to today's speech you will not be able to bring in umbrellas, backpacks or sharp objects.

The president is expected to start his speech around 11:30 a.m. Despite it all, classes will be going on as scheduled here today on campus.

Copyright 2011 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.