There is little doubt that this race has changed. From Obama's abandonment of hope and change and new politics, including his many flip flops, to a less than expected bounce from the Democratic Convention to what is shaping up to be a larger than expected bounce for the Republicans from the GOP Convention, and perhaps most of all the game-changing selection of Sarah Palin as the vice presidential nominee - this race has changed.
Obama is no longer on offense, (though he can still be offensive).
Obama appears to be shifting into a defensive mode - and between recent polling and as a result where he is choosing to campaign may help tell the story.
On Campaign Spot, Jim Geraghty wrote:
Third Straight Poll Puts McCain/Palin Within Margin of Error in Michigan
Well, judging by where Obama is spending his time, it would appear that his internal polls are saying the same thing:
Monday was Obama's third visit to Michigan in nine days, highlighting the closeness of the race here and the need to hold onto a state not won by a Republican nominee since 1988.
That is a lot of time in a state that was not originally on the top of most people's list of swing states, but which now Obama must defend, taking away money, resources and time from other states also in play.
In this TheVIMH Exclusive photo from a recent Obama rally in Michigan, apparently some Obama supporters understand the state of the race:
If you don't see it at first, pay attention to the sign toward the upper right of the photo.
MORE: But don't just take our word for it, Leon Panetta says it as well:
(h/t Red State)
“My concern is that I see them as totally reactive right now as opposed to getting out there on their own and saying what the hell they are about,” said Leon Panetta, a former chief of staff to Bill Clinton who has advised Mr. Obama. “They seem to be intimidated by the Palin pick. They seem to be intimidated by how the Republicans are coming at them on change. And you cannot win if you are constantly on defense.”
UPDATE: [8:00am] We are currently experiencing techincal difficulties with the pic, and apologize for the inconvenience. We will correct the problem as soon as possible. We anticipate having the issue resolved no later than 11am this morning. We thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter.
UPDATE: [1:00pm] ::grumble::, “…tech support is unavailable to take your call, please try again later.” Come back around 6pm if you’re interested in seeing the photo, which at this point, we don’t blame you if you aren’t. Oh, and kidding about “tech support” – we are unable to access the photo from our current environs and will have to wait until we are in a secure, undisclosed location to do so.FINALLY: [4:00pm] Link to pic fixed!