48 Hours for the Undecided to DecidePublished by Pamela Gentry on Monday, November 3, 2008 at 3:25 pm.
By Pamela Gentry, Senior Political Producer
COLUMBUS (Nov. 2, 2008) – With only 48 hours remaining in the race for the White House, the battleground state of Ohio both presidential candidates are pressing their argument about why undecided voters should do more than “lean” their way. They want their vote.
The Midwest, working-class state is a “must-win” state for Sen. John McCain, and Sen. Barack Obama would like to see it turn blue. Ohio sealed the deal for President Bush in 2004, and Obama’s road to Pennsylvania Ave would be easier with Ohio in the win column.
That’s why I’m in Ohio.
I’ll be watching and waiting here in Columbus to see first hand which way one of the most critical states swings. Both Obama and McCain raced around Ohio this weekend with hopes of luring any remaining undecided voters.
Obama traveled to Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus on Sunday. “We’ve got to want it more,” he told folks gathered at a rally in Cincinnati. Throughout the state, he warned supporters not to become overconfident. And before a crowd of 60,000 in Columbus, he told voters, “Don’t believe for a second that this election is over.” In Cleveland, with rocker Bruce Springsteen, he told a another crowd of 80,000, “We can’t afford to slow down, sit back, or let up for one day, one minute, or one second in these last few days.”
In the final 48 hours, McCain brought some star power of his own on to the Buckeye State. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appeared with McCain in Columbus at the Nationwide Arena. Schwarzenegger questioned Obama’s readiness to lead and told the crowd of 10,000, “Ladies and gentlemen, I only play an action hero in the movies. John McCain is a real action hero.”
McCain also campaigned in Pennsylvania, another state in the “toss-up” column. McCain would like to turn this blue state red. Democratic nominee Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) carried Pennsylvania in 2004. “My friends, I’ve been in a lot of campaigns. I know when momentum is there,” McCain said in Wallingford, Pa. “We’re going to win Pennsylvania and we’re going to win this election. I sense it, and I feel it, and I know it.”
With some polls saying 6 percent to 8 percent of voters are still undecided, neither candidate can take a break. I know the next 48 hours will feel like the longest since this journey to the White House began some 21 months ago.