In what some political insiders are calling a major victory for the presumptive Democratic nominee, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill) easily surpassed his G.O.P. rival, Sen. John McCain, in total frequent flyer miles for the month of July.
While polls show the two candidates locked in a close electoral race, Sen. Obama's impressive frequent flyer mile haul this month may put the contest for the most miles out of Sen. McCain's reach.
"Right now, we are feeling very good about the frequent flyer miles committed to Barack Obama," said Obama strategist David Axelrod. "John McCain would basically have to fly to Antarctica and back four times just to be in shouting distance of us."
Mr. Axelrod said that one benefit of Sen. Obama's impressive pile of frequent flyer miles was tangible and immediate: "With the miles already committed to him, Barack Obama can take his next trip to Iraq for free."
In the McCain camp, aides went to great lengths to send the message that they were unconcerned about Sen. Obama's daunting frequent flyer mile lead, even while privately admitting that the Arizona senator's recent itinerary may have worked against him.
"Obama was flying to Afghanistan, Jordan and Germany, racking up tons and tons of miles," one aide said. "John basically went to Wilkes-Barre and Altoona."
But the aide was dismissive of Sen. Obama's impressive edge in frequent flyer miles, arguing that mileage rewards were "meaningless" to the McCain campaign: "If John really needs to fly somewhere, he can just take Cindy's jet."
Andy Borowitz is a comedian and writer whose work appears in The New Yorker and The New York Times, and at his award-winning humor site, BorowitzReport.com. He hosts "Countdown to the Election, with special guests Joy Behar (The View) and Jeffrey Toobin (CNN, bestselling author of "The Nine") at the 92nd Street Y in NYC on October 22 at 8 PM. Student tickets half-price. For tickets go to 92y.org.
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