Obama embarks on whistle-stop tour

April 19, 2008 8:59:10 PM PDT
The Democratic presidential candidates are turning up the rhetoric on this last weekend before next Tuesday's Pennsylvania primary. Barack Obama embarked on a train ride into Pennsylvania's heartland on Saturday. He was greeted by thousands who swarmed small town rail depots to see the Democratic Party front runner.

In Wynnewood 6,000 people waited 3 hours in the sun for the Illinois senator, who was accompanied by Senator Bob Casey, his most prominent supporter in Pennsylvania. Obama included rival Hillary Clinton in attacks on the Washington establishment.

Barack told the crowd, "This election is our chance to declare independence... To declare independence from politics as usual."

Hillary Clinton made a stop at a historic West Chester Fire Station Saturday implying as she has time, and again that Obama is all flash, no substance. In addition she pushed that she has the knowledge to lead America out of war, recession, and all its other woes.

Hillary told those in attendance, "We have a 9-trillion dollar debt. We are totally dependent on borrowing from foreign governments. You think about it, our government runs on foreign money and foreign oil."

Obama's national poll numbers have been rising in recent days, even though Clinton appears to hold her lead in Pennsylvania, where the pundits says she needs a double digit win to justify staying in the race.

Obama's old school whistle-stop tour along the main line all the way to Lancaster is designed to be a rolling billboard in his final push to make a stronger than expected showing in the state. Southeast Pennsylvania is a key region for him.

In an exclusive interview aboard his train Obama says the nearly 80,000 new voters his campaign has registered still don't insure a victory on Tuesday.

Obama tells Action News, "She's had a good head start, and Governor Rendell has been putting a lot of pressure on folks."

But Obama says he and the governor have maintained an open line of communication. He tells us, "I called Governor Rendell after he had already endorsed Hillary, and said, 'Look, I understand you've got a relationship there, but I look forward to you working hard for me in the general election.'"

The bitterness of this Pennsylvania Primary has a lot of Democratic Party elders worried about the long term fall out from this latest round of Obama-Clinton.