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Alison Teal Headshot

If You Experience An Election Lasting More Than...

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Hot Flashes From The Campaign Trail

It's gotten frantic and treacherous out there. The debates are over but the campaign goes on and on... and on. We need it to be over, but there's still so much to be done. And will it even be over when it's over? As the TV ad says: If you experience an election lasting more than 14 days (,, consult your doctor.

Anything can and will happen. Who would have guessed that the glow from the convention would have lasted less than a few days? In some battleground states, there are six different abortion and terrorist attack ads out. The campaign is effective in its response, but it's a hard game of Whack-A-Mole. The polls are bound to drift back and forth in the next two weeks, but remember that the Obama campaign is stronger in the battleground states than it is nationally. Those of you in non-swing states won't see what's really happening. Yesterday there were huge lines in North Carolina for early voting. Almost half of Colorado voters have requested mail-in ballots. In Georgia (not exactly what we can call a battleground yet), 250,000 registered for early voting. If we can just get out the already registered Democratic voters in Florida who didn't vote last time, we're ahead of the game (500,000 young people and 900,000 African Americans). That doesn't even count those registered since 2004. Even in the other fragile, non-regional battleground area -- that of older Jewish voters in Florida and various suburbs like Cleveland -- Obama is doing better than either Gore or Kerry did.

The Democratic Senate Campaign Committee just came into Nebraska for Scott Kleeb, indicating they think his race is in play. Nebraska! Kleeb is running against the anti-regulatory hack and former Nebraska governor and Bush Secretary of Agriculture, Mike Johanns. Kleeb has a punchy ad worth your time:

Some local polls have Obama and McCain tied in the second district in Nebraska, which will certainly have coattails for Kleeb and reports that internals on some polls suggest that the first district may also be in play. Obama is using Omaha TV for the Iowa race so in a wave election even the Nebraska senate seat may be in play.

If you need more motivation to get out and work, be sure to watch my friend Sherry Jones' Torturing Democracy on PBS. You have to check local listings. The 90-minute film is also available on the website,, that has been developed in collaboration with the National Security Archive at George Washington University. There's a list of stations/times/dates on the website. Click on the "More" tab -- and then "Broadcasts."

This is a program that PBS said they "couldn't find a time to run" before January 21. After you see it you will know why some people might not want it broadcast before the election. And you will wonder why John Yoo still has a job at UC Berkeley and George Bush wasn't impeached.