Tuesday, November 06, 2012


At one of the final Obama rallies, Jay-Z belts out one of his hits with a subtle change of lyric - less offensive, more political.

"99 problems but Mitt ain't one."

If President Obama wakes up tomorrow morning with 99 problems, but Mitt ain't one, it won't be down to his campaign. It will be down to his strategy - his plans to get out the vote.

That is what Democrats will be doing all day - nagging and dragging people to the ballot box. An amazing 39 million Americans have already voted.

The Democrats' national field director, Jeremy Bird, is in charge of this operation and he writes in a fascinating blog that "newly registered voters, infrequent voters, and those who voted for the first time in 2008 - let's call them 'sporadic voters' - have taken advantage of the convenience of early vote, and the overwhelming majority of them are Democrats."
He also suggests there is a bigger pool of Obama supporters than Romney supporters among those who are still to vote.

Bruce Springsteen at the final Obama rally in Iowa 
Springsteen urges Democrats to get out and vote

Obama's team thinks early voting gives them a big advantage - those who have already voted are urged at rally after rally to grab five friends today, and take them to the polls.

Bird goes on to detail a massive operation in the swing states, where people will volunteer to phone people up and knock on their doors.  Remember this is not about persuasion - it is about those who've said they will back Obama but might not bother. In Ohio alone the Obama campaign will have 32,854 volunteers working three-hour shifts.

At another of the last rallies, Springsteen playing in the background, Obama's chief strategist David Axelrod and former press officer and long time Obama trusty Robert Gibbs are giving an impromptu news conference.  Axelrod joked about America's poet laureate being on stage and the sun in the sky. "What could be better?" he asks.

Many pollsters say that Obama is ahead in a lot of polls, if only slightly, and that so many surveys are unlikely to be wrong, even if the margin is tiny. I am not so sure. What you tell a pollster is not always the same as casting a vote.

It is quite a day. Do you feel nervous?. I can only imagine what the candidates feel.

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