Sunday, November 02, 2008

Final Days and Frayed Nerves.

The last few days of a campaign reveal just how much everyone's nerves are fried. Over at The Observer the story of a last minute find of an Obama relative living as an illegal immigrant in the US is being touted as front page lead story and a possible campaign upset.

The New York Times tuck the story way inside and note:

Some Democrats suggested that the timing of the disclosure could have been politically motivated, and some immigration lawyers said that for government officials to disclose information about an asylum applicant was unethical or perhaps illegal.

“People are suspicious about stories that surface in the last 72 hours of a national campaign, and I think they’re going to put it in that context,” Mr. Obama’s chief strategist, David Axelrod, told reporters on Saturday.

Senator John McCain’s campaign declined to comment, and neither Mr. McCain, the Republican nominee, nor his running mate, Gov. Sarah Palin, raised the issue on the campaign trail.

It's funny that as election day approaches the nerves of the people at The Observer seem more on edge than those at The New York Times.

Michelle Malkin, of course swarmed all over the story which appeals to all her prejudices, but I seriously don't think this one is going to fly. Even a seasoned hater like Malkin can't bring herself to muster an awful lot of excitement over a story as inconsequential as this one.

In the meantime, back on the trail, Obama continues to cut deep into McCain territory campaigning in states - Colorado, Missouri and Nevada - which Bush took easily four years ago.

In what seemed as much a symbolic tweak as a real challenge, Mr. Obama bought advertising time in Arizona, Mr. McCain’s home state.

Mr. McCain started the day in Virginia, a once-solidly Republican state that Democrats now feel is within their grasp. But he then turned his attention to two states that voted Democratic in 2004 — Pennsylvania and New Hampshire — reflecting what his aides said was polling in both states that suggested the race was tightening.

Still, his decision to spend some of his time in the final hours on Democratic turf signaled that Mr. McCain had concluded that his chances of winning with the same lineup of states that put Mr. Bush into the White House was diminishing.

I realised last night that I have been writing about this race for about twenty months, since the day Obama first stood on the steps of Springfield's State Capitol and declared he was putting his name forward.

After such a long time I suppose it's natural that people start to look for ways that it could all suddenly go wrong. But I honestly remain quietly confident that this week the dark days of Bush will be replaced by the fundamental decency and forward looking politics of Barack Obama.

America is on the brink. And the rest of the world can't wait.

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