Obama tapes automated phone call for Coakley

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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is wading deeper into the race to fill the late Edward M. Kennedy’s Senate seat in Massachusetts.

He taped an automated phone call asking people to support Democrat Martha Coakley in next Tuesday’s special election. He calls her an important ally in ensuring Congress passes his agenda.

Obama apologizes for the intrusion but says he needed to speak out because the stakes are high.

The president hails Coakley as a champion for the people who has taken on Wall Street, insurance companies and big polluters.

He says: “She’ll be your voice and my ally.”