PALIN DRAWS CROWD OF 60,000 IN FLORIDA - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:32 PM Thread Starter
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PALIN DRAWS CROWD OF 60,000 IN FLORIDA



THE VILLAGES -- Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin told wildly cheering, flag-waving, chanting supporters that John McCain is "the only great man in this race" and promised Sunday he will fix the nation's economy if voters give the GOP four more years in the White House.

"He won't say this, so I'll say it for him," the Alaska governor said in an almost confidential tone at the close of her first Florida stump speech. "There is only one man in this election who has ever really fought for you. John McCain wore the uniform of his country for 22 years -- talk about tough."

The Villages, a vast, upscale planned community north of Orlando, has about 70,000 mostly adult residents -- many of them military retirees -- who vote reliably Republican in statewide races. Tens of thousands inched along roads into the picturesque town square of the complex, where they stood in sweltering heat for about four hours as local GOP officials and a country band revved up the crowd.

"Sa-Rah! Sa-Rah!" they chanted at every mention of her name, applauding loudly and waiving tiny American flags that were distributed -- along with free water bottles -- by local volunteers. The fire chief estimated the crowd at 60,000.

Admiring throngs mobbed the Palin family's arrival and departure, snapping souvenir pictures. Autograph seekers thrust campaign signs, caps with the McCain-Palin logo and copies of magazines with her face on their covers, and the Palins responded warmly.

Palin, her husband and three of their children arrived in Orlando but spent a family day at Disney World, she said as she introduced her entourage to the enthusiastic crowd. She joked about similarities and differences of the two states at opposite corners of America, but was all business when she focused on the need for a large voter turnout in a hotly contested state with 27 electoral votes.

Recent polls have given the McCain-Palin ticket a single-digit edge but Florida is clearly up for grabs. Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., campaigned from Jacksonville to Miami late last week and the Democrats have mobilized a massive volunteer effort statewide. McCain, who led the Jan. 29 state primary with a big boost from popular Gov. Charlie Crist, has strong support in the vital I-4 corridor and across North Florida, where conservative southerners tend to register as Democrats but vote Republican in statewide races.

In a theme Palin would pound home, GOP Chairman Jim Greer Greer said Obama and his running mate, Delaware Sen. Joe Biden, have records of voting for higher taxes and have said on the campaign trail that they would increase regulation of financial markets.

"John MCain and I are going to take our case for reform to every voter in every background and every party, or no party at all," said Palin. "We're going to Washington to shake things up."

She said "John McCain warned Congress that we needed to do something before these problems became a crisis," but that Washington -- including Obama and Biden -- did not act for months as financial giants teetered and toppled.

"Americans are caught in kind of a perfect storm between high taxes, high gas prices, greed on Wall Street and a shortage of courage in Washington," she said. "But we need new leadership in Washington -- we need serious reform on Wall Street."

Palin, whose son shipped out for Iraq this month, made a point of asking veterans and military members in the crowd to raise their hands for a round of applause.

Then she recalled that McCain took an early, unpopular stance in support of the Iraq troop surge, a policy shift now widely credited with stabilizing Iraq. "That's the kind of man I want as commander in chief," she shouted, as applause and whoops rose in the town square. "John McCain is the only great man in this race."

Palin draws crowd of 60,000 in The Villages | news-press.com | The News-Press

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:35 PM
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I have been to The Villages. I can imagine 60K showing up for her. The whirl of golf carts and mobility scooters afterwords must have been deafening.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:35 PM Thread Starter
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In California,'Palin factor' sparks fear among Dems, joy among GOP...



Post-convention swing state polls are tipping toward Sen. John McCain, the TV pundits are waxing about "The Palin Factor," and Sen. Barack Obama's California supporters are freaking out about a race Democrats were uncommonly confident about only a month ago.

Conversely, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's addition to the GOP ticket jolted Northern California Republicans out of what one described as their "Underground Railroad" existence in one of the nation's most liberal regions. Ever since her speech to the Republican National Convention on Sept. 3, party officials say volunteers have been contacting California GOP offices in numbers unseen since Ronald Reagan was on the ballot for the White House.

Despite generating all this fear and enthusiasm, the Palin Factor hasn't changed the race in California. Obama beats McCain 52 percent to 36 percent in a Field Poll released last week, and neither campaign is broadcasting ads in the state's expensive television markets. On Thursday, Palin canceled her rally and fundraising visit to the state planned for this week.

So Californians seeking to get involved in either campaign have options: pick up the phone, get on a plane, or hop in a car and contact a voter in a swing state that's still in play. Nevada, New Mexico and Colorado are the closest swing states. Most of the Great Lakes states are still up for grabs, and Florida always beckons.

Lizzy Gore was tired of preaching to the blue choir when she was living in Redwood City during the primaries this year and found the same unanimity when she moved to Rhode Island three months ago. So last week, she began an online campaign at thepoint.com where she started raising money for a newspaper ad that would argue that Palin would not be a good vice president. If the online effort raises $21,285, she will buy and place the ad in the Cincinnati Enquirer in swing state Ohio.

"So we're preaching to swing voters," Gore said. "That's the plan, anyway, to create an emotionally resonant message that convinces those folks that Sarah Palin is not who they think she is."

On the California section of Obama's Web site, Welcome to Obama for America, there is an appeal for the "Drive for Change" program that reads: "As an Obama supporter in California, you can make a huge impact by traveling to Nevada to talk with voters about why Barack Obama and Joe Biden will bring the change we need." The California Young Democrats are organizing weekly road trips across the border, too.

Nationally, major players are starting to readjust their plans to the shifting electoral map. Last week, the liberal online giant MoveOn.org announced it would spend $5 million to $7 million on television advertising - double the amount the 4.2 million-member organization had expected to spend, executive director Eli Pariser said.

"In August, we were at half of 2004 in terms of energy," Pariser said. Four years ago, the organization raised $6.8 million in September; it already has raised $5 million this month. "In the last three weeks, we've seen this enormous surge in energy, driven both by, 'Oh, there's a real race here,' and also by, frankly, the Palin pick.

"That scared a lot of our members and got them off their chairs," Pariser said.

MoveOn's advertising will be targeted at 22 states - swing states, plus what Pariser referred to as "a wish list" of traditionally red states where Obama might be competitive. Its more immediate goal is to register 500,000 under-30 voters before the Oct. 6 deadline in some states.

But Republicans aren't giving up on California. California Republican Party chief operating officer Bill Christiansen said some private polls put the two candidates within five points of each other, and the McCain campaign is staffing 50 offices throughout the state. Four years ago, the Bush-Cheney campaign barely had a presence in California, and spent little money. "But we are fully funded this time," Christiansen said, declining to give a figure.

The state GOP is making 125,000 voter contacts every weekend, "which blows the doors off of what we were doing four years ago," said Christiansen. "Sarah Palin has put a shot of energy into this race."

Last week, the McCain campaign e-mailed supporters to say it was "looking for volunteers who are willing to spend the final 10 days of the campaign helping in a nearby state." But at the San Mateo County branch of the McCain campaign, 300 people turned out last week for its volunteer kickoff event; the turnout was goosed by Palin, organizers said. Now the office is welcoming first-timer campaigners like Phil Lehman, a 63-year-old Foster City resident.

His reason for volunteering: "Sarah."

"There's a realness to her, a believability," Lehman said. "I think she's going to eat Joe Biden's lunch at the (vice presidential) debate."

It will largely be up to volunteers like Lehman to spread the word in California and beyond. From Sept. 6-13, broadcast television viewers in Grand Rapids, Mich., saw 1,120 TV ads from either the Obama or McCain campaigns, according to the nonpartisan Wisconsin Advertising Project. That's 1,120 more than viewers in San Francisco saw.

'The Palin Factor' sparks fear and enthusiasm

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:37 PM
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Then why have all the polls turned back to BLUE?

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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Then why have all the polls turned back to BLUE?
Name one poll that is outside the margin of error. Better yet name one poll that has controlled for the Bradley effect.

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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:53 PM Thread Starter
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I have been to The Villages. I can imagine 60K showing up for her. The whirl of golf carts and mobility scooters afterwords must have been deafening.
They may drive golf carts, but they are the people who get out and vote! I can hear the whirl of voting machines from here!

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:56 PM
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Ok Jay, why not post up your best guess in my Electoral College thread. Let's see what you got
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 09:58 PM
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Name one poll that is outside the margin of error. Better yet name one poll that has controlled for the Bradley effect.
Gallup, CBS/NYTimes and Quinnipiac are all out of MoE [4,5,4].

And the Bradley Effect is over 25 years old. We have NO IDEA how it plays in either the 21st Century or on a National Level. It MIGHT be a consideration but then again, it might not.

That same issue was calculated when Geraldine Ferraro ran as VP. So there are boxed variables that we have NO CLUE as to their viability in this election. It is all conjecture.

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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 10:00 PM
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They may drive golf carts, but they are the people who get out and vote! I can hear the whirl of voting machines from here!
Yeah, like they would have voted for Obama if Palin was NOT on the ticket. That group is a zero sum gain. The election is NOT going to be decided by that group.

It would be like a rally of all black voters in South side of Chicago. Cool rally but zero sum gain for a campaign.

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-21-2008, 11:41 PM
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Did she use crayons or pencils???

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