By now it seems like the primaries happened ages ago, but a recent post at FiveThirtyEight.com made me remember one of the reasons I supported Obama over Clinton.
…we zipped up to the Obama Columbus office and found it both open and busy. Jonathan Swain, Barack Obama’s Communications Director, noted that it was one of 43 field offices open around the state, with the potential for a couple more to be added in the final weeks. In all 92 Indiana counties, Swain said, “Barack Obama always intended to compete and compete hard.”
When Bill Clinton won the Presidency in 1992, the Democratic Party was overtaken by the Democratic Leadership Council idea that you only had to compete in the “battleground” states, completely ceding several states to the Republicans. They completely glossed over the fact that Ross Perot took 20% of the vote and allowed Clinton to win with a plurality.
It was people from this DLC school of thought who ran Hillary Clinton’s primary campaign, and allowed Obama to pick up race after race to catch up and surpass Clinton in delegates. It’s these same people who would have run her general campaign in much the same way.
The fact that so many of these states are now in play has a lot to do with the economy, but with Obama as the candidate, the Democrats are ready with offices and feet on the ground in all these states to help Democrats up and down the ticket.