Christopher Cooper reports from Columbia, Mo., on the presidential race.
Barack Obama may be changing up his endgame but the electoral vote rich states are still his favorite, both for campaigning and fund-raising. Here’s a sampling of the number of campaign events he has staged since clinching the nomination in early June including events he has scheduled Saturday.
FLORIDA – 24 events. Polling is tight in the Sunshine State, with the consensus in both campaigns giving a slight edge to John McCain. Florida leads Obama’s most-visited list after he boycotted the state at the party’s urging during the primary season. The count includes three fund-raisers, including one event in September that grossed him $5 million. Obama has scheduled a rally in Jacksonville on Monday. A McCain loss here would seriously crimp his prospects for taking the White House. (27 electoral votes)
OHIO – 24 events. This ultimate battleground state remains an Obama favorite. He will make another stop here on Sunday. (20 electoral votes)
PENNSYLVANIA – 19 events. Polls show Obama with a relatively strong edge in a state that went for John Kerry in 2004, and has voted Democratic since 1988. A McCain win here could offset losses in several small western states where Obama holds a polling lead. (21 electoral votes)
VIRGINIA - 18 events. Electoral demographics continue trending toward Democrats. The Dominion State is viewed by the Obama campaign as the best chance for a red state pickup. (13 electoral votes)
MICHIGAN – 17 events. The other state Obama boycotted during the primary. McCain camp recently suspended activities there, suggesting Obama is poised to win it. (17 electoral votes)
COLORADO — 9 events. The changing electoral demographic in this Republican state increasingly favors Democrats. It’s the lynchpin to Obama’s western strategy, which also focuses on New Mexico (6 events) and Nevada (10 events). (9 electoral votes)
INDIANA – 8 events. Polls have tightened in recent weeks but Obama campaign officials concede the reliably Republican Hoosier State remains a long shot. Extra attention has been paid here due in part to the state’s proximity to Obama’s hometown of Chicago. (11 electoral votes)
CALIFORNIA — 8 events. It’s virtually inconceivable that Obama could lose California. Since the primary, Obama visits were mostly about cash flow – five of the eight were fundraisers and only one was a speech. (55 electoral votes)
GERMANY – 4 events. All visits came during an Obama tour of Europe and the Middle East in the summer – a sojourn much derided by Republicans. Georgia (the state, not the country) has received less attention from Obama with only 3 events, one of which was a fundraiser. The campaign suspended activities there over the summer, but announced today that they were going back on the air until Election Day. (0 electoral votes)