Monday, June 30, 2008

Coming Soon


I really enjoyed writing long and thoroughly-researched posts during my "Profile Month" in May, so I'm looking to begin a series of interviews with local experts (local here means MIT, Harvard, etc.) comparing John McCain's "Lexington Plan" and Barack Obama's energy proposal.

Check back in a week or so for that!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

A Long Day Ahead

A little TV at 6 A.M., lots of work, lots of errands, and a little traveling too.

All of it without enough sleep.

Good night.

In My Professional Opinion

[Per CNN's amusing online poll]

If this is where global warming information is coming from, we're all in trouble.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Unity Had Occurred, Regardless of the Pageantry

I rarely spend much time preparing for a campaign event. All I need is a few hours to charge my camera batteries and I'm on my way.

My routine changed for yesterday's "United for Change" rally. Not only did I repeatedly (and unnecessarily) submit my request for press credentials to guarantee that I was given access, but I gave the event more that its fair share of attention over the past few days. On Wednesday I predicted a larger crowd than expected, imagining news headlines like: "Tens of Thousands Make Pilgrimage to Unity." As it happens one could summarize the whole event as simply, "2,500 Unite for Historic Event," but that doesn't tell the whole story.

Driving to New Hampshire yesterday I played out a number of scenarios in my head about the rally. I expected a bunch of older voters and stay-at-home moms and dads to show up. I also figured there would be a smattering of protesters, both Republicans and Democrats. It seemed pretty simple: the two candidates would share the stage as a symbol of the Democratic Party's unification, and while most everyone would be excited, a handful of disgruntled ex-Clinton supporters would try to make the news with "Obama's an Empty Suit!" signs.

True, true, and true.

I had never felt it before at an Obama event, but I half expected (to borrow Clinton's previously sarcastic line) "the sky to open, the light to come down, and celestial choirs to start singing" outside the middle school in Unity. As it turns out, I could barely muster goosebumps.

Although the rally was a solid event, it never really took off the way one would have expected given the two historic candidates who were uniting their efforts for the first time. In part, I believe this was due to some missed opportunities. I expected (as did others I spoke with) that both Senators Obama and Clinton would finally loosen up and use yesterday's event as an opportunity to poke fun at their long primary fight in order to lighten the mood and release some of the tension and pent up emotions between their two campaigns, and to move on, with a shared laugh, towards a sense of shared community that would be felt by both of the candidates' backers. That never happened. In addition, for so long now, Obama and Clinton supporters have prided themselves on being different from each other and I never felt like either of the Senators took a moment yesterday to simply break the ice and acknowledge those differences (the proverbial "elephant in the room") and state that they would be valued and respected, as part of the process of bridging the interests of their respective campaigns.

As I stepped off the school bus that transported the media to the event, I couldn't help but notice the giant wooden "U-N-I-T-Y" prop that had been suspended on the side of the stage, not to mention the new "United for Change" signs that were being distributed. It was clear that the Obama campaign wanted to turn this rally into something truly spectacular. From my point of view that did not happen.

It strikes me now that it was not the Obama campaign's fault that yesterday's rally was not one of the more memorable campaign events I've been to. Beyond the logistical difficulties inherent in organizing a campaign event --delays in bussing thousands of people into and out of a tiny rural town, long waits, and occasionally inadequate facilities--all of which occurred here, first, in the hot sun, and then, in a fierce thunderstorm. The hardest part—the part that the Obama campaign had difficulty achieving—was how to market the idea of "unity" in ways to create a compelling front page story and make a big splash.

New Hampshire Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter said it best yesterday: "Did anyone ever doubt this moment would happen?"

Whether or not anyone will remember what was said in Unity, NH, the moment has occurred.

(Photo credit: Luke N. Vargas. 2008. All Rights Reserved)

Worth an Hour

I'm a pretty faithful listener of Ira Glass' This American Life on NPR, but I was floored by this week's show more than most. What was to be a quick trip in the car to pick up a soda turned into an hour in the parking lot listening from beginning to end.

Not to unnecessarily politicize today's show, but with the Supreme Court's ruling this week defining the words of a document centuries old, I've been thinking a lot about how people deal with issues larger than themselves or how others fail, though sometimes succeed, at making decisions on our behalf.

Episode 358: Social Engineering articulates through storytelling what's been on my mind.

If you're not in the mood for such a dramatic listening experience, check out my all-time favorite This American Life episode, "First Day," from way back in 2002.


[Watch Part II]

[Watch Part III]

Friday, June 27, 2008

One Shot

Computer isn't working well enough to get the rest up tonight.

Too many hours in the heat with no sunscreen's given me a headache and drained my energy for the night.

I will try to crank out Michelle Obama and Unity, NH summaries by tomorrow evening.

(Photo credit: Luke N. Vargas. 2008. All Rights Reserved)

Barely Made It

Word is that it took more than two and a half hours to get more than 4,000 supporters out of the event site today in Unity, NH. I was lucky enough to be on the first bus out, but the scene was very disorderly and a ferocious rainstorm didn't make matters any better.

I'll have some photos online later tonight.

Time for School

I'm on a good old yellow school bus heading from Claremont to Unity, NH.

What I forgot to bring: sunscreen.


Racing West on I-89

Powered by My Morning Jacket's "One Big Holiday."

Not Enough for Me

So North Korea is tearing down a prominent part of one of its nuclear plants and is forking over a lot of old nuclear program documents to the international community.

Not surprisingly, President Bush, eager to look like he can understand and react to complex international events, decided that this was a good time to lift economic sanctions on North Korea. But not just sanctions, Bush decided it was worth removing North Korea from the list of states sponsoring terrorism. That's the move I just don't get.

Korea's shift towards greater transparency in its state-run nuclear program should be applauded, and it makes the world today slightly safer than it was yesterday. But if there's one thing we learned on September 11th it was that terrorists tend to work under the radar — it's not like a government gave them four airplanes to crash — and just because North Korea may be less of a threat publicly, who knows what they're doing behind close doors. Do we know how secure the stockpiles of nuclear materials North Korea possesses are? What about the stockpiles we don't know about? Can we account for all of the uranium that has passed through North Korea in the past decade? Do we trust the North Korean government to tell us everything it's been up to?

I didn't grow up in the age of nuclear panic, so it's difficult for me to put North Korea's potential nuclear threat in perspective. But I am growing up in an age of terrorism, and it seems pretty clear to me that simply dismantling certain parts of an above-ground nuclear facility isn't enough to let North Korea off the hook as a potential sponsor of terror.

Anyone agree?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A Romantic Comedy

A joint campaign stop in Unity, NH and then a campaign donation from Obama to Hillary Clinton. The storyline keeps getting cheesier and cheesier (and better).

How many great jokes about their long nomination contest will Clinton and Obama's speechwriters throw into the two candidates' remarks tomorrow? Tons.

Bring it on, Unity!

Live from The Armory

I'm in the blogging section of the Manchester, NH Radisson Hotel's Armory Ballroom.

On stage are Michelle Obama, Jeanne Shaheen, and four female New Hampshire panelists. The topics of discussion today are issues concerning working women and the struggles middle-class families face in New Hampshire.

Michelle Obama opened the event with prepared remarks that she seemed to struggle through (and she seemed a little uncomfortable playing the political game of introductions and thank yous) but she has settled into her role as discussion moderator very well, and ideas and stories are being shared and spoken very naturally.

Did Michelle Obama perform well as a smiling face on stage behind her husband? Yes, but she's excelling in a much more politically useful role now.

There will be a lot to write about this event once I return back to Massachusetts late Friday.

(All photos: Luke N. Vargas. 2008. All Rights Reserved)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


I was just watching a local cable news report about Unity, NH, the site of this Friday's joint Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton campaign rally.

Unity's sheriff was interviewed on TV predicted the number of spectators and press combined to total between two and three thousand people.


Unity's PD should be ready for A LOT more than that.

[I'll be in Unity to cover the event starting early Friday A.M.]

Obama Gains Some Serious Ground

They may not be "battleground states," but Arkansas, Georgia, and Kentucky have been solid red states for some years now.

Suppose Obama doesn't win any of the three?chances are he won't?but in 2004 Bush won the three states by an average of over 15%.

Fast forward to Barack Obama, 2008, that number is down to just over 6%.

Holy smokes.

Is it even necessary to bring up that Obama is up now (by 1%) in Indiana, something yours truly didn't believe could happen.

[graphs from electoral vote]

Monday, June 23, 2008

14—12, for now.

For a while I've held that the general election will come down to a small handful of issues (more so than it will come down to certain swing states): Iraq, energy policy, and McCain's perceived "ethics."

Looking at my results from American Public Media's candidate quiz, my match with Obama would have jumped significantly if I agreed with him on Iraq, and McCain's score would be a lot lower if I no longer believed McCain put country over politics.

I may score a 14-12 now, but August could bring a 10-16, and November a 20-6.

I said back in early April: "It's unfortunate and hard for many people to realize that when you force your politics down someone's throat, they'll never say something that could potentially weaken their own position. Being more civil, however, you notice that the distinctions between Obama and Clinton, for example, are more nuanced. Furthermore, you're more comfortable admitting that your side isn't perfect."

I still believe that dynamic exists between Barack Obama and John McCain, and I'm curious to see which issues are guiding voters' decisions.

Take the quiz below and let me know what your result is by leaving a comment on this post or sending me an email at

Happy quizzing!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Worn Out

2.5 jobs, a week of travel, a concert, lots of dinners and receptions, and finally a (sort of) free day tomorrow.

I've been working on a few interesting posts for the week ahead, so they'll be some new content arriving on the blog over the next few days, but for now I'm off to enjoy a relaxing night and as many hours of sleep as I can squeeze in.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Letting Others Do the Talking

Yesterday I posted a rather fiery response to Obama's decision not to take public financing for his campaign, and I got a lot of heat for it. I deserved it. Now that I've taken the post down I decided I'd let some more credible sources do the talking for me.

Below are a number of great articles from around the web that are consistent with the way I feel:

"Obama out of system, but not out of character," by Ben Smith, POLITICO

"Obama chose winning over his word," by Liz Sidoti, AP

[If you can survive the kind of sarcasm I only wish I could write]
"Oooh, The New Politics," by Mona Charen, RealClearPolitics

Don't say you heard it from me....

A Fantastic Ending

There are few better ways to end a week in New York City than club seats to a R.E.M. concert.

...which is to say I had a great time.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


As in Madison Square Garden.



Beyond excited.

Despite the Polls...

The news this week is that Obama is beating John McCain in a number of important swing states in recent polls, but what I've been hearing is a lot less positive for Obama.

I've been in New York City since Monday night and the enthusiasm for Barack Obama among New Yorkers that I expected is, if not gone, greatly reduced. In the past two days I have heard Obama's economic recovery plan mocked by countless businessmen as uninformed and naive. Not every voter is an economic policy expert, but a lot of people read the Wall Street Journal and know enough to detect an economic strategy that won't work. A line I overheard on 58th and Park yesterday:
"McCain doesn't know a thing about the economy, but he admits it and hires good advisors to tell him what to say. Obama knows what's really going on with the economy right now, but he doesn't have the guts to throw some hard reality into his platform."

Is this a signal of a significant problem for the Obama campaign? No, but I spoke with a high-ranking supporter of Bill Clinton and advisor to Jimmy Carter this week who admitted to me that they were not planning on voting for Barack Obama. Why? Because as a New Yorker, John McCain is better prepared to protect America.

Now there's a problem for Obama...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Missing New Hampshire

New York City is a difficult location to experience your first “business trip,” especially as an eighteen-year-old. I’ve flown alone, driven solo all over creation, and held down the house for a few days while my parents were away, but taking the bus down to Manhattan and being plopped down into the heart of a neighborhood that doesn’t seem to want to have anything to do with you, even at 10:30 at night, is difficult. I can imagine older business travelers taking a taxi straight from the airport to the front step of their hotel, but having to kill an hour in the city before I can head off to where I’m spending the night threw me into a situation I struggled to handle.

Going into last night I had tremendous confidence. Whenever I traveled with my parents I would walk quickly through the airport ahead of them, noticing how I ended up taking all the right turns and making it to the gate without consulting a directory or trying to locate where I was. In my eyes, whenever I traveled with others I thought I was doing a much better job.

The fact of the matter is that I did do alright; I made it from South Station to the Upper East Side with no help, but I was not confident in the least. As a measure of how turned around I was, once I got off the bus on 34th street it took me almost ten minutes of embarrassing walking and rewalking of the same city blocks (with a fair share of walking in circles) to locate an ATM, one of the easiest tasks I could imagine in New York.

Yesterday may not have been the crowning success of independent travel I had hoped for, but today brought new successes, even with a handful of failures.

Traveling through New York is nothing like the traveling I’ve done in New Hampshire. Ask me turn by turn directions to Daniel Webster College or the Puritan Backroom in Manchester, I can do that. Ask me where the nearest subway stop is from where I’m staying in New York….I’m stuck.

I miss New Hampshire.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Veteran's New Tour

On Thursday I felt like the odd one out. The last campaign I had covered before John McCain's June 12th Nashua, NH town hall meeting was Hillary Clinton's Pennsylvania Primary celebration on April 22, and it's been more than six months since I've caught up with McCain. Since late last year there has been a noticeable change in the tone of Senator McCain's campaign events, and I felt something different as soon as I walked into the Daniel Webster College gym on Thursday.

At McCain events, local tech crews have been replaced with 50ft high lighting trellises, staff have changed from polos to suits, and the overall feel of the "maverick" in a pack of bland (in my opinion) Republican candidates is gone. The production value of John McCain's once rural-feeling campaign events has increased tremendously, thanks largely in part to the full support of the RNC. I never attended a George W. Bush campaign event, but I can imagine it felt like this.

Even the look of the traveling press corps has changed, they are no longer a frequently-changing mix of local, regional, and national reporters, but a much closer-knit group of elite journalists resigned to the fact that they'll be covering the same candidate together for months to come.

A far cry from the cash-strapped campaign that trudged (often literally, see snow plow story) through New Hampshire, McCain is now running up expenses equal to his opponent's campaign operation.

So what separates McCain's expensive campaign setup from Obama's? Both candidates' events may look like concerts now, but for Obama the lights are bright, so the masses can revel in their company of thousands. At McCain's events now, the lights are dim and McCain ascends the stage, illuminated by a soft spotlight.

This is, after all, the election of the scene's new star and the veteran rocker—solo and performing at his second home.

McCain hasn't changed, I'm just seeing him under new lights now.

(All photos: Luke N. Vargas. 2008. All Rights Reserved)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Only Met Him Once

Actually, I didn't really ever "meet" Tim Russert, but he did let me stand in front of him at a John McCain rally in Des Moines this past January. I told Russert I was a high school student and traveled all the way out to Iowa for Christmas. Russert said something to the effect of, "that's fantastic! Hope you're having a great trip."

One sentence and one photo I snapped as Tim was entering the room. That was it. But it's in the unprecedented level of journalistic integrity and hard work that now will live on in my memory of Tim Russert.

What's my first political memory?

Waking up on Sunday mornings, running down the stairs for breakfast and finding my dad watching Meet the Press.

Since 1991, always bringing enthusiasm to the job:

Friday, June 13, 2008

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I'm still in New Hampshire and the internet is too slow to update more photos, but I'll try to have a full event summary of John McCain's Nashua townhall by Saturday afternoon.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Washington: Decades Behind

Do you believe in the slogan, "Change That Works for You?"

Does "Courageous service—Experienced Leadership—Bold Solutions" sound like a joke to you?

The past few days we've heard about how two energy bills, one that would place a windfall profits tax on oil companies, were stopped in the United States Senate. The jury is still out on who to blame for the high cost of gas now, and in my eyes it's not just the oil companies. I can see why a tax on oil companies wouldn't make it through Congress, but the fact that the other bill?promoting alternative energy sources?didn't make it to the floor astonishes me.

Washington DC. 2008. Still decades behind.

No matter who our next president is, alternative energy bills won't just be taken up starting in January of 2008, they'll be raced through Congress by either Barack Obama or John McCain.

Plain and simple, there's NO good reason we shouldn't start thinking about life after oil.

Mission Accomplished

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Going [LIVE]

For anyone planning on waking up early tomorrow, I will be doing a live television taping for CN8 (Comcast News) "Your Morning" tomorrow at 7:00AM. The station is available on cable from Maine to Virginia.

The stomach butterflies are showing up already...

Quick Update

If I've been absent from this blog for a few days it is because I am now working for a website called

VoteGopher was started by a pair of Harvard undergraduates that will be comparing the positions of John McCain and Barack Obama on key issues.

For the moment my work with VoteGopher is part-time. I am serving as their Multimedia Content Coordinator in preparation for their new website launch in a few weeks.

I will try to spend as much time blogging and covering the election for this site as I can (and I am going to be in New Hampshire later this week for some John McCain events), but starting in a few weeks you will be able to see where my energy has been going.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

My Hall of Fame

For anyone visiting here for the first time I wanted to create a post of links to some of my posts from the past fifteen months of this blog. Of the 287 posts I've published since March 12, 2007, the following are my all-time favorites:

"'Super Volunteers" Reshape America: A Profile" — May 7, 2008

"How to Have a Conversation" — April 1, 2008

"My First Vote" [Video] — February 6, 2008

"Two Americas Came Together" (Edwards ends campaign) — January 30, 2008

"The Road We've Already Tread" (Hillary Clinton endorsement) — January 13, 2008

~IOWA CAUCUS COVERAGE~ — January 1-5, 2008

"Who Shows Up" (Barack Obama in Des Moines, IA) — January 3, 2008

"Sticking Around" (Joe Biden in Plymouth, NH) — October 11, 2007

"A New Dodd" (My Dodd endorsement) — August 31, 2007 [My #1]

" 'God Bless Him' " (Dennis Kucinich in Dover, NH) — August 17, 2007

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Insider Access Makes for Great Entertainment (and Concern)

Yesterday, John McCain's official campaign website posted a new video slideshow prepared by McCain's campaign manager, Rick Davis.

Over the course of fifteen minutes Davis presents the data and tactics behind McCain's strategy to defeat Barack Obama. Granted, what you'll see is far from the entire official campaign plan drafted behind closed doors and being quietly executed — in the form of strategic fundraising pitches, event planning, and alliance-building, not to mention VP selection — but this taste of "insider" strategy reveals interesting information nonetheless.

One of the most noteworthy parts of the video is the McCain campaign's identification of its battleground states. It seems the campaign will be focusing highly on two states in the Midwest that I previously pegged as this election's hottest contests — Ohio and Michigan — as well as Wisconsin.

In addition, Davis says the Southwest (including the recently liberal-leaning state of New Mexico) is McCain-friendly due to the Senator's record of public service in Arizona and his "strength with Latinos and his record on immigration."

My guess is the McCain folks uploaded the video to show potential GOP fundraisers that a win in the 2008 election in within reach and the Republican Party is stronger than many might have previously thought; if Davis' remark about over 500 campaign offices opening in targeted states during the next four months isn't an inspiring line for Republican supporters, then McCain has no chance of rallying support.

I believe posting the video was a smart move. A lot of what's in the video is disconcerting for any Democrat and could lead some Democrats to second-guess Obama's nomination and erode their confidence in his candidacy. Take for instance Davis' line that a state like West Virginia — where Clinton defeated Obama by 41% — is essentially "off the map" for Obama because Democratic defectors will now vote for McCain since Clinton's out of the race. If that's the case, McCain picks up an easy 5 electoral votes.

Though the new McCain strategy briefing would lead one to believe McCain will sweep the November election, it's important to consider that a similar presentation by one of Obama's lead strategists would show quite the opposite. It's also worth noting that Obama is already fighting back with a new fundraising effort against McCain. Today, Obama's website sounded a call to arms against indications that the GOP fundraising machine is now stronger than Obama's. The advertisement urges Democrats to top McCain and the GOP's collection of over $45 million in the past month.

If Obama's fundraising totals from the Primary Election are any indication of his strength, his campaign should achieve their June goal.

No matter how many "all-knowing" campaign managers like Davis make predictions, we should take each one with a nice big grain of salt. That's not to say they don't make for entertaining reading (or viewing)...

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Listen to Good Reporting

Tonight's TV highlight might be the Celtics-Lakers NBA Finals game (especially here in Boston), but the cable news networks are abuzz with their sensational campaign news story of the day. For them, Barack Obama's meeting with Senator Clinton tonight serves as an opportunity to pull out live camera shots and a handful of political experts who purport to know what no other American not directly involved could know?what is going on behind closed doors.

However, if the Obama-Clinton meeting doesn't satisfy your newsy cravings and you have an hour to devote to the soothing radio tones of WAMU's The Diane Rehm Show, the best political commentary of the day comes from NBC News correspondent Richard Engel. Particularly noteworthy is Engel's presentation of what he sees as the "five wars" that have taken place in Iraq since the US invasion in 2003. Listen to the segment HERE, and skip ahead to the end of minute 17 to hear Engel's "five wars."

The heyday of network news might be over, but there's no question that the best correspondents?Engel included?continue to report with an intelligence and insight that make their reporting a waning form of art.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Pictures May be Worth 1,000 Words, But One Sentence Says More For Me

From a donor and supporter email I received from Hillary Clinton:

Whatever path I travel next, I promise I will keep faith with you and everyone I have met across this good and great country. There is no possible way to thank you enough for everything you have done throughout this primary season, and you will always be in my heart.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Final Chapter

Tonight will be the last night of the Hillary Clinton campaign in my eyes. Hillary and Terry McAuliffe may decide to continue her campaign and pressure superdelegates to believe she's the stronger candidate in November vs. McCain with the hope of tipping the scales....(etc)

....but for now Barack Obama is the Democratic nominee for President.

A Boston Globe article published today communicated some of my feelings about the end of the contest for the Democratic nomination — that Clinton is stronger than McCain in the fall, that Obama is losing steam, not gaining it — with a clarity that other MSM articles I have read of late have lacked.

The reason I maintain this blog, however, is to do more than quote other sources and offer merely tidbits of my own thoughts opposite newspaper articles, and I can't help but concede that my attitudes towards tonight's news do not place me squarely under the canopy of the "Clinton-Democrats" or with the "Obama-Democrats." Neither of those titles can encapsulate all of my opinions, but that is far from a bad thing and I feel I am one of millions of Democrats who are conflicted, inspired, cautious, but concerned for the Democratic Party more than anything else.

In short, here's what I'm thinking tonight:

Obama is the first african-American to be the nominee of a major political party in our nation's history and it makes me proud.

Clinton has never been a stronger candidate than she's been over the past two months, but after tonight her motives for remaining in the race are too clear—to pray that superdelegates will decide she's stronger than McCain and begin moving to her side over the summer.

If I were a superdelegate I would look at the polls in battleground states and would support Clinton in an instant. But if I were ACTUALLY a superdelegate I would not dare to back Clinton after tonight's claiming of victory by Obama.

Racism and sexism are both wrong and can't be measured against each other. The two are equally indefensible in all their forms.

At my private high school in Cambridge, MA I heard Hillary Clinton publicly called a "bitch" on numerous occasions and observed Microsoft Paint creations of Hillary Clinton paired with a giant cartoon penis while teachers turned a blind eye. In one class this year I was one of three Hillary Clinton supporters, but the only one who dared to admit it. In that class of eleven students the teacher was a fervent Obama supporter and would argue Obama's strengths in front of the class while dismissing any cases to be made for Hillary Clinton. In one of the most liberal environments in the nation I felt silenced by fellow Democrats.

I will never "withdraw" my support for Hillary Clinton. Over the past six months I have seen a truly inspiring, passionate, authentic, effective, and strong candidate arise out of a Hillary Clinton I had previously written off as entitled and machine-like. I don't think it's wrong or destructive to the Democratic party to consider myself a supporter of Ms. Clinton in the way that I'm still an avid supporter of Joe Biden and Chris Dodd.

White voters in recent primary states voted for Hillary Clinton because they wouldn't vote for a black man. Call it "blue collar" or "working class," but it is what happened. It's an important trend to notice, and I fear Barack Obama will struggle to win the general election versus John McCain this November for this and other reasons, but it is my larger ideological responsibility as a supporter of universal health care, of energy independence, of a more dignified immigration system, of returning diplomacy to foreign affairs, and for (although it will be more difficult than any of us can imagine) to changing the way business is done in Washington, that I am now supporting Barack Obama.

Returning to the (General Election) Campaign Trail

John McCain hosted 127 campaign events in New Hampshire last year. Compare that to Hillary Clinton's 81 and Obama's 70 and you realize why the state matters so much to the McCain election strategy.

If JM can put a dent in the perception that the Northeast is unbreakable Democratic territory than he stands to turn the tide on Ohio's recent liberal leanings and the advances by Democrats in traditionally GOP-friendly Indiana and Virginia.

McCain is back in New Hampshire on June 12th for a town hall meeting at Nashua's Daniel Webster College?a site at which I've attended a handful of events over the past year?and I will be sure to be in attendance.

Thursday, June 12th
Doors open at 12:30pm.
Nashua Town Hall Meeting
Daniel Webster College Gymnasium
20 University Drive
Nashua, NH 03063