October 6th, 2008
08:00 PM ET
14 years ago

Palin schedule shows McCain on the defensive?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/06/art.palinnc.ap.jpg caption="Palin will go to Greenville, North Carolina Tuesday."](CNN) - The McCain campaign announced Sarah Palin is set to make a stop in North Carolina Tuesday night, two days after the Republican VP candidate stumped in Nebraska - two reliably red states that haven't voted for a Democratic presidential candidate in at least three decades.

Palin's most recent travel schedule is the latest indication Barack Obama and the nation's ailing economy have put John McCain on the defensive, even in states where the prospect of a Democratic win was unthinkable only four years ago.

Palin's visit to North Carolina comes as most recent polls of the state show Obama and McCain essentially in a dead heat there. A CNN/Time Magazine/Opinion Research Corporation poll of North Carolina last month showed the candidates dead even, while some recent polls have even suggested a slight Democratic lead. CNN/Time Magazine/Opinion Research Corporation will release a new North Carolina poll Tuesday morning.

Election Center: Check out the latest state polls

Then there’s the unknown variable of an anticipated rise in turnout in the African-American community. In 2006 that voting bloc made up 26 percent of North Carolina's electorate, with 85 percent voting for Sen. John Kerry. Obama is expected to win an even higher percentage of the black vote this cycle, with a higher expected turnout as well.

"The North Carolina of today is far more diverse than the North Carolina of twenty or even ten years ago," CNN Senior Political Researcher Alan Silverleib said. "The state’s changing economy has attracted thousands of new voters willing to pull the lever for a Democratic nominee. Second, the state’s sizable African-American voting bloc is extremely energized by Obama’s candidacy. Third, the economic downturn has made Tar Heel voters — just like voters in the rest of the country — much more receptive to the Democratic message of change."

Palin's appearance in the state comes more than five months after McCain held his last public event there, delivering a speech in early May at Wake Forest on his vision for judicial appointments. The event came the same day as Indiana and North Carolina's Democratic primaries and was largely overshadowed by the still-ongoing battle between Obama and Sen. Hillary Clinton.

McCain-Palin spokesman Ben Porritt said Monday the campaign remains confident the Republican ticket will carry the state.

"This is a state that Barack Obama has put millions of dollars into," he said. "This is an opportunity to speak to our supporters there and makes sure they turn out."

Porritt also declined to say whether McCain has any plans to visit North Carolina before Election Day.

The North Carolina visit comes after Palin traveled to Nebraska's Second Congressional District Sunday, prompting pundits to speculate the McCain campaign is worried the Obama could peel off an electoral vote there. Nebraska, like Maine, awards its electoral votes by the winner of each congressional district, and the second district - which includes Omaha and its surrounding areas - is the most Democratic.

But Palin told Nebraska voters Sunday she was not visiting the state because the campaign was worried about a possible loss there.

“The pundits today on TV—one of them was saying, check out the vice president’s schedule, check out where she’s going—she’s going to Nebraska,” she said. “But the pundit was saying the only reason she’d be going there is ‘cause they’re scared, so they got to go there and shore up votes. And I wanted to reach into that TV and say no, I’m going to Nebraska because I want to go to Nebraska."

Filed under: Nebraska • North Carolina • Sarah Palin
soundoff (919 Responses)
  1. Roland

    You just wink at 'em Sweety. Dog gon'it, they'll just melt at the flash of your mavericky eyes.

    October 6, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  2. lou

    CNN ..........I agree with previous post. That CNN is a venue for Obama supporters. .......its all Palin bashing, mcain bash..and yaya yayay Obama.
    I think Obama campaign pays CNN

    Read his book, look at his church he quit........They publically do NOT support white people.

    October 6, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  3. Mark

    Someone needs to stick a fork in McSame/Palin. They are definitely done.

    October 6, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  4. roger dowdle, lockhart, Tx

    So now McCain has a woman to do his dirty work. McCain has the advantage in attacking Obama's character- he has character! Obama has it rougher, how do you attack the character of someone who has demonstrated time and again that he has no character? McCain is destroying the respect anyone may have had for him! And he is proving he has none for himself!

    October 6, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  5. L

    obama is an empty suit. And as soon as folks raise legitimate questions about his character or lack of accomplishments the real whining and vitriol begins. What change?

    October 6, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  6. Monica

    This message is for everyone. Obama is a repected man that has tried to bring our country together. I am an African American and I love my country and all the people both native as well a imigrants. I believe most people are just a little uncomfortable with people they are not use too. I can asure you Mr. Latino that we black people love you too. We respect and understand white people as well. Lets stop dividing and come together so we all can get what we want. Most imigrants come to America for the opportunity. If we do not work together we will not have a land of opportunity to grab. I think we have to be careful, just because a person claims to be latino it could be a perpitrator. I have not personally met any latino that does not like Obama. Be careful, we can all be Americans and want the best for our Country.

    October 6, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  7. Shannon

    well Anne, if you can't afford to go to the doctor, and you gave 90.00 to Obama's campaign, you are an idiot. maybe you should let someone else handle your money. Do you go to the casino with your rent money too. How nice of Obama to take money from people who need to go to the doctor, but can't afford it. Maybe he is counting on the rest of us to pay for your health care, because you aren't smart enough to do it yourself. Is that what we have to look forward to.

    October 6, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  8. Baleful

    And why is investing in our society and people called "socialism" with a sneer of derision?

    I was taught to invest in my fellow citizens, that it was the best way for us to get through difficult times.

    Perhaps America needs a depression to help it remember that money truly doesn't buy everything – that the foundation of our society is NOT based on a religious text, or issues of an individuals sexuality.

    How a nation treats its most vulnerable – the poor, children and the elderly tells you more about the character of her people than any other standard. Think of that the next time you refuse to help your fellow citizen, regardless of party affiliation.

    P.S. I don't trust any one who winks at me, male or female.

    October 6, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  9. mrsb

    I hope she goes to the research triangle area where there is great respect for education – actually, that seems to be true all over NC! She can try selling her anti sex education message as the teenage pregnancy rate climbs again, thanks to this narrow right wing thinking. I so hope NC goes as blue as a Tarheels basketball game!

    October 6, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  10. Obama for me

    John McCain is so motivating and he talks to my patrioatic side. I have given over $1000 to Obama $25 dollars at a time over 18 months. Tomorrow night I will be sitting at a table in front of my towns library registering voters. This is the 1st campaign I have ever been involved with and I am 58 years old.
    Thanks you John McCain for stirring my blood and making me work so hard for Obama. Next week I will be going door to door to 40 homes to plead with the people to give Obama their vote. Who would have thought?
    Never before but now is the time and I believe!

    October 6, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  11. L

    Where are my comments dissapearing to CNN? Are you letting Obama's empty headed minions screen them?

    October 6, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  12. Billy Joe McCallister

    No uppity senators in the White House. "Whitey", do your job on election day.

    October 6, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  13. cecil

    If Sen.Obama Is A Terrorist, than Gov. Palin Is An Unfit Mother!

    And Her Husband Is A Member Of The "AIP"

    October 6, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  14. bob in LA

    they should be scared- they offer nothing!

    October 6, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  15. NB

    Yeah you self proclaimed Maverik you should be worried. You start throwing stones at Obama , it will come back to you. You became a Maverik becaue your image was tarnished with the Keating investigation . You ditched your wife because she was disguised.
    You married a much younger tropy wife. So tell us Who is the real McCain . Don't get me started about your VP.

    October 6, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  16. Haas

    It's funny how the Reps are running scared now. I love it!!!! It's seems the more they tell their lies, the wider the spread. Maybe McCain and Palin should just talk about the economy and be honest with the American people.

    October 6, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  17. soccer mom for obama

    don't send someone who can't talk.
    oh well, mcbush is going downhill. what else is he to do.

    stupid move to get palin. any women would have been better than her.

    go obama.

    October 6, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  18. Jody Monroe

    Thanks for the tip, I googled "John McCain's Top 10 Temper Tantrums" and found several VERY interesting articles. You should check it out too.

    Scary!! Do you want his finger on the trigger for the next world war?

    This is just the tip of the iceberg. He's running Republican but is not a true Christian and does not believe in Christian values, except when it's convenient (like when running for election).

    We really need to pray for the election candidates and issues!

    October 6, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  19. Margaret

    I moved to NC just over a year ago and I am very happy this state is going to SWING DEMOCRAT this election! Yeah! You've got to be an ingnorant fool if you think this country needs another Republican hot-head in the White House....

    October 6, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  20. Uncle remus

    Dis boy can't win. He dumb.

    October 6, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  21. William

    Wow...it's like a house of cards, isn't it? Once it starts, there's no way to stop it! WooHoo!

    Maverick? More like a donkey.

    October 6, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  22. Bart in NC

    Auggie, you're real smart. LOL

    October 6, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  23. DB25

    Of course McCain/Palin are on the defense with all the mudslinging. They are behind in the polls and that's what Republicans do when they are behind. I hope America gets so sick of the Republican negativity that when McCain or Palin come on TV, they change the channel and vote for Obama.

    October 6, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  24. bernice

    remember what the kitchen sink did for Hillary?

    October 6, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  25. Mindy

    Why was Palin wearing a white suit in Florida today? Hey lady – it's past labor day – no white allowed!!! Palin's an idiot....

    October 6, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
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