Democrats' Tight Race Leads to Fierce Campaigning

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Two weeks ago, the well-known Field Poll gave Hillary Clinton a 12 point lead over Barack Obama in California.  Sunday’s Field Poll?  Clinton 36 percent, Obama 34.  Two other surveys gave Obama a narrow lead.  So while Clinton herself couldn’t campaign in California yesterday, someone else could.
Clinton: “You know she can deal with any crisis that comes up.  You know she is competent, strong.  But you also have to have a president who remembers your face and your stories and will not forget that while dealing with the emergencies, you have to keep the promises.”
Former president Bill Clinton campaigned up and down the Golden State yesterday on behalf of his wife, including a brief lunchtime event at Cal Expo.  And his argument rang true to Sacramento resident Ann Shirkey.
Shirkey: “I think listening to Bill Clinton emphasizing the experience that the Clintons have had for so many years, that’s just very reassuring to me and it’s something I can’t overlook, as much as I love Obama.  I can’t overlook that experience and I just have so much confidence in the Clintons.”
Chanting at Obama rally: “Yes we can! Yes we can!”

The Obama campaign couldn’t come up with a former president, but it still held events across the state, including a rally on the Sacramento State campus.  Student Jim Decoite says he doesn’t want another Clinton in the White House.
Decoite: “I don’t agree on some of the issues with Obama, but it’s who I think is the best leader.  Not, oh, I agree with this person 100 percent – no.  I don’t think anyone agrees with a candidate 100 percent.  Just a matter of who you think could take the country in the best direction, and that’s Obama.”
Both campaigns agree the race has narrowed in California, but there’s another factor too: Almost half the ballots could be cast by mail – and some of those ballots were mailed before Obama’s late surge.