ATHENS- Mid-Ohio Valley residents will be traveling to Ohio University to see President Barack Obama speak at 5 p.m. today.
Annelle Edwards of Marietta said she is going to see the president to show her backing of the man and his policies as the nation's chief executive.
''I'm a strong supporter of his,'' she said of his position on women's issues.
Following Tuesday night's debate between the president and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, Edwards expects the president's speech to be strong.
Edwards said she hopes Obama will discuss his ideas for handling the national budget to make it fair for everyone, not just the rich. She also hopes he will include how the elderly and the poor factor in so the budget will not exclude them.
''I am also interested in what he will do for women, children and families in this country,'' she said.
Harold Brown, chairman of the Wood County Democratic Party, said they have about 20 people going to Athens and he has heard local people are going on their own.
Brown, who is going, said the president is more popular now among many in the party locally.
Four years ago, Hillary Clinton had the majority of Democratic support in this area when she ran for president, he said.
Brown said the local Democrats want to show their support for the president.
Romney recently said he would cut 20 percent of the national budget, Brown said.
Brown wonders where such cuts would be made and who would be impacted by such a move. He fears the poor and others would be forced to take the brunt of such cuts.
Brown said he is surprised more people on Social Security and disability are not raising concerns on that because they will be the most likely impacted.
Peg Griffith of Parkersburg said it was important to go to Athens because the president is standing up for and protecting the middle class.
''It is also exciting to be able to go,'' she said.
Griffith said she believes the middle class is dwindling.
''We are losing the middle class,'' she said.
She believes Obama will take the steps in making sure the middle class remains strong.
''If they are good, the country is good,'' she said.
Brown said he hopes the president covers several topics in his speech.
''The president needs to reiterate his vision on jobs and health care,'' he said. ''The health care system is not perfect and still needs to be tweaked.''
Brown hopes the president will talk about education, children and the disadvantaged as well as gender issues, including abortion. Brown would like to see the president talk about war, the immigration challenge and regulations on businesses and the environment.
''We would have been in a bigger mess now than what we are if not for regulations,'' he said. ''It was the lack of regulations on banks that almost sunk us.''
Brown worked in the chemical industry for 40 years. Although some regulations were initially troublesome, he said, they led to better air quality and better management of solid waste.
Greg Smith, chairman of the Wood County Republican Party, said the group was not planning to make an appearance in Athens to protest or picket.
''We are going to stay away,'' Smith said. He expects the Republicans in Ohio to step up and address what the president will talk about.
He said individuals may go and picket, but the county party is not.
''In that situation, your message could get twisted around and your opponent can use it against you,'' Smith said. ''Your message could end up getting lost in the shuffle.''