Saturday, September 6, 2008

Palin may woo blue-collar voters from Obama

Democrats do not think that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's arrival in the enemy camp changes Sen. Barack Obama's path to the White House. As far as they're concerned, Republican John McCain's running mate is President George W. Bush.

As Obama told voters in Pennsylvania on Friday, "This race is not a personality contest."

That bet is about to be tested.

Independent observers in Ohio think Palin does change the race, enhancing the GOP's appeal - not among the women who supported Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, but among white men. They say Palin's most potent weapon may even be her snowmobiler, union husband, Todd.

"If you see him turning up in Appalachian Ohio and up in Canton and Warren and the old steel towns, I think he would play very, very well," said Ken Heineman, an Ohio University political analyst. "If they try to go after his DUI conviction, jeez, his whole up-from-the-blue-collar thing? He's going to resonate very well among swing voters and among male Democrats, the blue-collar Democrats that Obama did not win in the primary. He would be an incredibly appealing figure, and of course, she is herself..."

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