Monday, April 21, 2008

A Big Day Ahead in Pennsylvania

The way I see it, the election day story-lines for the Pennsylvania primary have already been written.

Eight polls attempting to put a finger on the forces at work in tomorrow's primary were released today. Seven of the eight polls put Hillary Clinton ahead of Barack Obama, and the one outlier only had Obama winning by 3%.

The official schedules of Clinton and Obama tomorrow evening reveal what might be the two campaigns' expectations. While Obama is holding a rally in a 13,000 seat stadium in Indiana with "heartland" rocker John Mellencamp, Senator Clinton is holding an "Election Night Celebration" at the Park Hyatt in downtown Philadelphia, an event I will be attending.

Is it wise to read into schedules like this and assume that the Obama campaign doesn't think the Senator will win tomorrow? Not entirely, but at the same time I can predict with 100% certainty that if Obama wins tomorrow he'll open his remarks with, "I wanted to celebrate this tremendous occasion with my friends here in the state of Indiana."

Why? Because the 2008 campaign is raging forward at breakneck pace and, from a tactical standpoint it makes no sense for Obama to stick around in Pennsylvania once the voting ends. There just isn't enough time this campaign season to wait around an extra day after the polls close...but some people still appreciate those who stick around anyway, whether it's Clinton or Obama.

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