Most expensive vote ever? Barack Obama diverts Air Force One to cast early ballot in Chicago
One thing we know about this coming election morning in America: there will be no pictures of the incumbent waving at photographers as he ponders the voting machine in his Chicago precinct. That’s because Barack Obama did something last night that no sitting president has done before — he voted ahead of time.
Taxpayers might legitimately ask how much it cost to divert Air Force One from the President’s packed swing-state campaign itinerary yesterday to make the extra Chicago stop. (Determinedly Democrat Illinois is not a place he would normally need to set foot in.) No single vote in history can have cost as much as that one did. But never mind that, Mr Obama had an important point to make.
The Democrats know that getting as many people as possible to vote early will be crucial to maximising turn-out. It seems like the message has been getting through. This reporter watched as a crowd of 16,000, assembled in a park near downtown Denver to see Mr Obama, was asked if they had yet taken advantage of early voting that had begun here two days before. I am just guessing, but it seemed like at least 10,000 hands shot up.
All this matters, because the evidence is that Democrats make use of early voting more than Republicans do. Exactly why isn’t clear. A Time magazine poll this week had Mr Obama beating Mr Romney by a two to one margin among early voters across the country. Meanwhile 11 polls conducted in the swing states showed the president ahead of his challenger by between five and 35 points among those who had already made their choices.
Anxious not to allow anything to get in the way of the notion that their man is ahead, the Republicans claimed in a memo they had cut into the Democrat’s early voting edge in the key state of Ohio and that with early voting Mr Obama was cannibalising votes that he would otherwise get on election day. Team Obama begged to differ: “Like Mitt Romney’s tax plan, the early vote numbers from the GOP just don’t add up.”
There is intense debate over whether the Romney momentum that began after the debate here three weeks ago has started slow. It is hard to divine, but not perhaps out here in the west. A Wall Street Journal/NBC poll last night showed Mr Romney drawing even with the president in Colorado and catching up fast in Nevada.
The main voting day in the US is 6 November.
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
- 2 PornHub begs users to stop uploading video clips of Brazil getting beaten 7-1
- 3 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Gaza-Israel conflict: The terrible price children are paying for Israel’s war with Hamas
Rotten-egg smell of farts could help battle heart disease and Alzheimer's
Online trolls target alleged rape victim Jada, by copying how she appeared in video of attack
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
£75000 - £85000 per annum + ex bens: Deerfoot IT Resources Limited: Biztalk Te...
£60000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Trade Desk Specialist (FIX, Linux, Windows...
£35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Service Desk Analyst (Windows, Active Dire...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: PHP Web Develo...