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Saturday night in Bristow, Virginia, President Clinton joined President Obama for an energy-filled rally in front of an estimated 24,000. If you didn't get to catch their speeches live, the video of each is really worth checking out:
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Discuss

Following up on his previous "Clear Choice" ad for Obama and his brilliant DNC speech, President Bill Clinton has cut a new direct-to-camera ad for President Obama:
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Transcript:

President Bill Clinton:
"The stuff some folks are saying about President Obama sound kind of familiar. The same people said my ideas destroyed job, they called me every name in the book."

"Well we created 22 million new jobs and turned deficits into surpluses."

"President Obama's got it right. We should invest in the middle class, education and innovation. And pay down our debt with spending restraint and asking the wealthy to pay a little more. Sound familiar?"

The ad will run in Nevada, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Ohio, and Virginia.

There's also another ad reminding Democrats of the heartbreak of 2000, that every vote counts, and that we can't let it be that close again.
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Transcript:

Voiceover:
"Five hundred and thirty seven. The number of votes that changed the course of American history."

Newscast:
"Florida is too close to call"

Voiceover:
"The difference between what was..."

Voiceover:
"And what could have been..."

"So this year, if you're thinking that your vote doesn't count.That it won't matter. Well, back then, there were probably at least 537 people, who felt the same way."

Announcer:
"Make your voice heard. Vote."

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/...
"Five hundred thirty seven – the number of votes that changed the course of American history," the narrator says in the spot, which began airing in Tuesday in Boston media markets, which include the battleground state of New Hampshire, according to political ad tracker CMAG.

Obama's campaign said the spot would also air in Colorado, Nevada, Iowa, Ohio, Virginia, Florida, and Wisconsin.

Discuss

The Wall Street Journal and NBC just released two swing states polls by Marist:

Wisconsin - Obama 51-45 (prev. Obama 50-45, 9/16-18)
Iowa - Obama 51-43 (prev. Obama 50-42, 9/16-18)

Both among Likely Voters, taken October 15-17.

Two important pieces of Obama's firewall are holding up solidly, little changed from a month ago.

Also, in the Wisconsin Senate race, Democrat Tammy Baldwin leads: 49-45

http://firstread.nbcnews.com/...

After two presidential debates, Marist pollster Lee Miringoff observes, the races in Iowa and Wisconsin are back to where they were in September. “There were two debates, but you can’t tell it from the numbers.”
Full Iowa Report (PDF)

Full Wisconsin Report (PDF)

Breaking down the early vote

What especially seems to be helping Obama in Iowa is early voting. Thirty-four percent of likely voters in the poll say they have already cast their ballots, and the president is winning those people, 67 percent to 32 percent. Another 11 percent are planning to vote early, and he’s up among that group, 55 percent to 39 percent. But it’s reversed among Election Day voters: Romney is ahead, 54 percent to 39 percent.

In Wisconsin, just 15 percent say they have already voted or plan to vote early, and Obama leads among this group, 64 percent to 35 percent. Yet it’s even among Election Day voters, with Obama getting 48 percent and Romney at 47 percent.

Just like we've seen in Ohio, Obama is running up the score early once again. It makes you wonder how some pollsters justify Likely Voter screens that discard Obama votes, when Obama is dominating in Actual Voters.

Un-Skewing innoculation via NBC's Mark Murray:

Nate Silver's 538 Model Update:

Even against the bad Gallup data, President Obama's chances of winning rose from 65.7% to 70.4%. His Electoral Vote projection rose from 287.2 to 291.6.

Obama's chance of winning Iowa increased from 63% to 74%.

Obama's chance of winning Wisconsin increased from 75% to 81%.

Discuss

Clearly, Romney had been hoping that Obama would hit him on the 47 percent comments in the debate because he had this retraction teed up. Instead, he had to deliver it on Hannity's show in front of the last audience that wants to hear him backtrack.

When asked how he would have responded to Obama if it was brought up in the debate, Romney replied with the following:

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Transcript courtesy of TPM:

http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/...

Well, clearly in a campaign with hundreds if not thousands of question and answer sessions, now and then you're going to say something that doesn't come out right. In this case I said something that's just completely wrong. And I absolutely believe however that my life has shown that I care about the 100 percent and that has been demonstarted throughout my life. This whole campaign is about the 100 percent. When I become president it'll be about helping the 100 percent.
This will be a test for his base, who wanted him to double down and embrace these comments. Will they let him slide this time because they're too afraid of losing?

Freeper-ville's first reaction? Denial, after the jump.

Continue Reading

The "who's tougher on China" ad wars continue with this one hitting Romney on his investment in Global Tech, which manufactured appliances under sweatshop conditions:

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TRANSCRIPT:

"These appliances could have been made here in America. But a company called Global Tech maximized profits by paying its workers next to nothing under sweatshop conditions in China. When Mitt Romney led Bain, they saw Global Tech as a good investment even knowing that the firm promoted its practice of exploiting low-wage labor to its investors.

Mitt Romney, tough on China? Since when?"

The ad will run in New Hampshire, Virginia, Florida, Ohio, Iowa, Colorado, and Nevada.

The Boston Globe reported recently on how Romney's firm, Brookside Inc., bragged on the advantages of China's low-wage, low-tax environment:

http://bostonglobe.com/...

WASHINGTON – Less than two weeks before an investment firm controlled by Mitt Romney decided to invest in a China-based home appliance company, the company put out a detailed document to investors promoting itself as a low-wage, low-tax firm that would not be subject to taxes in the United States.

It used “inexpensive labor,” Global-Tech Appliances wrote in a prospectus meant to attract investors on April 8, 1998. Its location in China meant “an overall effective tax rate that may be less than that of US corporations.” It said its current operations would not be subject to “material US taxes because it should not be considered to have significant income effectively connected with a trade or business in the US.”

David Corn of Mother Jones was first on this story back in July:

http://www.motherjones.com/...

Last month, Mitt Romney's campaign got into a dustup with the Washington Post after the newspaper reported that Bain Capital, the private equity firm the GOP presidential candidate founded, invested in several US companies that outsourced jobs to China and India. The campaign indignantly demanded a retraction, claiming that these businesses did not send jobs overseas while Romney was running Bain, and the Post stood by its investigation. Yet there is another aspect to the Romney-as-outsourcer controversy. According to government documents reviewed by Mother Jones, Romney, when he was in charge of Bain, invested heavily in a Chinese manufacturing company that depended on US outsourcing for its profits—and that explicitly stated that such outsourcing was crucial to its success.
Discuss

On Wednesday, word came that Obama For America would be purchasing slots for two minute TV ads to run September 28th through October 4th. Here is the ad, an economic message where Obama lays out what he would tell us if he could sit down at our kitchen tables.

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http://www.news-journalonline.com/...

Obama readied a new ad in seven battleground states, a lengthy spot designed to cut through the clutter and outline a second-term agenda to create manufacturing jobs, promote U.S.-made energy resources, train workers and reduce the deficit. He uses the ad to remind voters that the nation was losing nearly 800,000 jobs a month when he took office and was "mired" in Iraq but now the nation, he says, is "moving forward again." He charges that Romney's plan would double-down "on the same trickle-down policies" that led to the economic crisis.

"It's time for a new economic patriotism rooted in the belief that growing our economy begins with a strong, thriving, middle class. Read my plan. Compare it to Gov. Romney's and decide for yourself," Obama says in the ad, which directs viewers to a campaign website. The ad was appearing in New Hampshire, Virginia, Florida, Ohio, Iowa, Nevada and Colorado. Campaign aides said voters in those states would see it frequently.

Transcript:
During the last weeks of this campaign there will be debates, speeches and more ads. But if I could sit down with you in your living room or around the kitchen table here's what I'd say:

When I took office we were losing nearly 800,000 jobs a month and were mired in Iraq. Today I believe that as a nation we are moving forward again. But we have much more to do to get folks back to work and make the middle class secure again.

Now, Governor Romney believes that with that even bigger tax cuts for the wealthy and fewer regulations on Wall Street all of us will prosper. In other words he'd double down on the same trickle down policies that led to the crisis in the first place. So what's my plan?

First, we create a million new manufacturing jobs and help businesses double their exports. Give tax breaks to companies that invest in America, not that ship jobs overseas.

Second, we cut our oil imports in half and produce more American-made energy, oil, clean-coal, natural gas, and new resources like wind, solar and bio-fuels—all while doubling the fuel efficiencies of cars and trucks.

Third, we insure that we maintain the best workforce in the world by preparing 100,000 additional math and science teachers. Training 2 million Americans with the job skills they need at our community colleges. Cutting the growth of tuition in half and expanding student aid so more Americans can afford it.

Fourth, a balanced plan to reduce our deficit by four trillion dollars over the next decade on top of the trillion in spending we've already cut, I'd ask the wealthy to pay a little more. And as we end the war in Afghanistan let's apply half the savings to pay down our debt and use the rest for some nation building right here at home.

It's time for a new economic patriotism. Rooted in the belief that growing our economy begins with a strong, thriving middle class. Read my plan. Compare it to Governor Romney's and decide for yourself. Thanks for listening.

Discuss

This is what it looks like when a race breaks open. President Obama has seen favorable poll numbers in all three states, but the Ohio and Florida results are shocking blowouts.

The New York Times, in collaboration with Quinnipiac University and CBS News, is tracking the presidential race with recurring polls in six states. In Ohio — which no Republican has won the presidency without — Mr. Obama is leading Mr. Romney 53 percent to 43 percent in the poll. In Florida, the president leads Mr. Romney 53 to 44 percent in the poll.

The surveys, which had margins of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points for each candidate, also included a Pennsylvania poll, where Mr. Obama is leading Mr. Romney by 12 percentage points.

To recap:

Ohio - Obama +10 (53-43)

Florida - Obama +9 (53-44)

Pennsylvania - Obama +12 (54-42)

These are likely voters, folks. Support well over 50 for Obama, huge margins, and only 3-4 percent undecided all three states, two of which in Ohio and Florida that Romney must have. If these results are right, you can stick a fork in Romney.

http://www.cbsnews.com/...

Obama also has approvals of at least 50 in each state:

The president's job approval rating in Florida and Ohio is 50 percent, with 47 percent disapproving. His approval rating in Pennsylvania is 51 percent, with 45 percent disapproving. Romney is viewed more unfavorably than favorably in all three states.
Is it the economy, stupid?
Mr. Obama holds six point leads in Ohio and Pennsylvania on the question of who would do a better job on the economy, and a five point lead on that question in Florida.
The polls also show good results for all three Senate seats:
The poll also found that Democratic Senate candidates are leading their Republican opponents in all three states. In Florida, Bill Nelson leads Connie Mack 53 percent to 39 percent; in Ohio, Sherrod Brown leads Josh Mandel 50 percent to 40 percent; and in Pennsylvania, Bob Casey leads Tom Smith 49 percent to 43 percent.
Polling details:
This poll was conducted by telephone from Quinnipiac University's interviewing facility September 18--24, 2012. The number of likely voters interviewed in each state is 1,196 in Florida, 1,162 in Ohio and 1,180 in Pennsylvania.
Continue Reading

The NY Times reports that, just as the Obama and Romney campaigns battle over who is tougher on China, Obama is using his powers of incumbency to take action on that front.

http://www.nytimes.com/...

The Obama administration plans to file a broad trade case at the World Trade Organization in Geneva on Monday accusing China of unfairly subsidizing its exports of autos and auto parts, a senior administration official said late Sunday, in a move with clear political implications for the presidential elections less than two months away.
Obama will announce the case on Monday, while he campaigns in Ohio, a state which relies on the auto industry and has benefited greatly from the success of Obama's auto bailout. This announcement comes on the heels of admissions from within the Romney campaign that Ohio may be slipping away from them. Following those leaks, NBC/Marist showed Obama with a 7 point lead in Ohio.

Of course, this is hardly a one-off last minute move by the Obama administration. They have consistently pressed trade issues against China.

http://content.usatoday.com/...

"President Obama has always stood up for American workers, regardless of politics. He's filed seven trade complaints against China, bringing cases at twice the rate of the Bush administration," Smith said.
And won them:

http://www.reuters.com/...

Washington won a major victory in an election-year dispute against China on Monday when a WTO ruling found China had discriminated against U.S. bank card suppliers in favor of a state-owned enterprise that enjoys an illegal monopoly.
In recent days, there have been dueling ads out of the Obama and Romney campaigns specifically on the issue of China and trade. Romney put out an ad first and Obama hit back with this:

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This action, while part of an ongoing effort, reinforces the message in his ad and comes at a time where Obama may be on the verge of virtually locking Ohio down. Certainly, it can't hurt.

Continue Reading

I would not normally bring an individual poll result, let alone for a Senate seat, to the front page. Due to the interest and anxiety over the Massachusetts Senate race, I thought it was warranted in this case.

http://www.masslive.com/...

A new poll by the Western New England Polling Institute conducted September 9-13 shows Elizabeth Warren leading Scott Brown 50-44 among Likely Voters. I'm not aware of their track record, but I notice that their poll results in this race have been consistent with other polls taken around the same time.

Their previous poll at the end of May showed Warren leading by 2 (45-43) among Registered Voters. By way of comparison, the new poll has Warren leading by 12 (53-41) among Registered Voters, a shift of 10 points.

The pollster states that Warren has solidified her base, likely influenced by her convention appearance:

Tim Vercellotti, professor of political science and director of the Polling Institute at Western New England University, said Warren's lead comes in part from the fact that she's shored up support among Democrats to 89 percent, while losing only six percent of her party's support to Brown.

Part of that bump, he said, may be attributable to the fact that polling started at the end of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., and just two days after Warren delivered a prime-time speech ahead of former President Bill Clinton at the event.

Whether some of the shift is a temporary post-DNC bump, it is good to see momentum on her side both in the polls and in campaign strategy. Her new, more aggressive ad strategy may be too recent to have factored into this poll result, but it bodes well for the future.

It can't hurt to take another look at her fantastic Fighter ad.

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Or to help contribute to her victory:

Donate to Elizabeth Warren on ActBlue.

Discuss

The Obama campaign has posted a new 60 second TV ad that confronts Romney's question, "Are you better off than you were four years ago?" head on.

It reminds the viewer exactly where we were four years ago, in CRISIS - the economy in freefall. Then it shifts to contrast the two plans moving forward, utilizing snipits from both Clinton's and Obama's DNC speeches. It posits that the real Question we should be asking is: "Who has the better plan for the future?"

Recent OFA ad buys have been for two 30 second ads and one 60 second. It looks like this is going to be replacing the previous 60 second go-to, which was "The Choice." The majority of the two are similar, contrasting the Obama and Romney plans. However, this adds the additional framing of answering the "four year" question before reframing the focus Forward, and also reminds us of the highly effective convention.

Updated with the transcript:

http://thepage.time.com/...

BARACK OBAMA: “I’m Barack Obama and I approve this message.

VOICEOVER: “He keeps saying it.”

MITT ROMNEY: “This President cannot tell us that you’re better off today than when he took office.”

VOICEOVER: “Well, here’s where we were in 2008:”

BRIAN WILLIAMS: “Worst financial collapse since the great depression.”

LESTER HOLT: “American workers were laid off in numbers not seen in over three decades.”

VOICEOVER: “And here’s where we are today. 30 months of private sector job growth. Creating 4.6 million new jobs. We’re not there yet. But the real question is: Whose plan is better for you? The President’s plan asks millionaires to pay a little more to help invest in a strong middle class, clean energy, and cut the deficit. Mitt Romney’s plan? A new two-hundred-fifty-thousand-dollar tax break for multi-millionaires. Roll back regulations on the banks that cratered the economy, and raise taxes on the middle class.”

BILL CLINTON: “They want to go back to the same old policies that got us in trouble in the first place.”

BARACK OBAMA: “We’re not going back, we are moving forward.”

VOICEOVER: “Forward.”

Discuss

There has been concern about how DNC viewership would be affected by last night's opening NFL game and NBC dropping its coverage of their primetime convention coverage.  Well, the initial ratings totals are in, and it seems that the popularity of the Big Dog helped stave off any major dropoff.

As Mediabistro reports:

And even with football on NBC, the 10pm hour of the DNC’s night two still topped night two of the RNC a week ago: 20,622,000 vs. 20,049,000
The breakdown is as follows:
•DNC Day Two / Sept. 5, 10-11pm:

ABC: 4,587,224 viewers (1,728,724 in 25-54)
CBS: 4,410,140 viewers (1,723,928 in 25-54)
MSNBC: 4,387,567 viewers (1,419,115 in 25-54)
CNN: 4,134,662 viewers (1,543,771 in 25-54)
FNC: 3,102,606 viewers (813,816 in 25-54)

Compared to Day 2 of the DNC in 2008, ABC, CBS, MSNBC and FNC are up. The growth can be attributed to one less network (NBC) to watch. It could also be attributed to the fact that CNN is down -23% in total viewers and down -33% in A25-54 viewers, vs. 2008.

Please note that this total does not yet include PBS and some smaller cable channels.  When this initial number was reported for Day 1, it was about 22 million which increased to 26.2 when all channels were included.  

Once we have the finals, the gap between the DNC and RNC will be greater.  For their Day 1, the RNC total grew less from just over 20 million to 22.3 million with all channels totalled, because they get much less viewership on PBS.

I will update when the full numbers are out from Nielsen, but Day 2 is going to beat the RNC easily and will likely only be a dropoff of a couple million from DNC Day 1, even going up against the NFL kickoff.

UPDATE:

With the final ratings for all channels in, the DNC Day 2 beat the RNC 25.1 million to 21.9 million.

Not only did the clobber the other side with the added obstacle of the NFL, but it's also only a 1.1 million dropoff from Day 1 of the DNC.

http://blog.nielsen.com/...

An estimated 25.1 million people watched the second night of the 2012 Democratic National Convention on Wednesday, September 5. The second night of the DNC was carried live from Charlotte, North Carolina across seven networks and featured a keynote speech by former President Bill Clinton.

The DNC was up against a formidable opponent. The NFL kicked-off (literally) its season with the New York Giants hosting the Dallas Cowboys on NBC (8:41 PM to 11:30 PM ET). The game averaged 23.9 million viewers.

Discuss

Today, at the same event at the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay discussed in Shawn Russell's recommended diary about Ryan's debt commission lies, VP Biden came right out and said it. I've seen VoucherCare used here on the site, but I'm not aware before now of the President or VP using it.

Politico reported on the event:

http://www.politico.com/...

“My mom was a smart woman,” he said. “But, my mom, I can’t picture handing her a voucher at age 80 and saying — you go out in the insurance market and you figure out what’s best for you.”
“Ladies and gentleman, it’s just that simple: We are for Medicare; they are for Vouchercare,” Biden told the shoulder-to-shoulder crowd of about 1,000 at the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay.
And the fantastic video:

If there was any question how soon and how directly the ticket was going to attack on this issue, the Biden has now been unleashed!

Discuss
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