I believe [Michael Barone] has failed to account for the real reason that Metro Philadelphia is polling so much higher for Obama than Democrats in earlier elections ["Why John McCain Continues to Trail Barack Obama in Pennsylvania"]. It is the combined power of an energized African-American and left base and the unprecedented organizing skills of the Obama campaign. They have registered tens of thousands of formerly uninvolved citizens in Pennsylvania—and they are 99 percent Obama votes. If Obama wins Pennsylvania, it will be because of these previously nonvoting citizens. Say what you want about whether Obama or McCain is the better candidate, but this democratic byproduct of this election is surely positive regardless.
Comment by Ashley Adams of MA
What Obama's 2001 NPR interview does is provide historical context to his recent stump remarks to Joe the Plumber—establishing not a slip of the tongue but an abiding political philosophy to redistribute wealth. Moreover, to increase taxes to fund government programs is one thing, but to raise taxes on the upper middle class in order to send $10,000 checks to Americans who owe no taxes is quite another. It is called socialism, and America has fought wars to prevent the proliferation of this political philosophy.
Comments by Stephen Gianelli of CA
McCain's focus on Pennsylvania has much more to do with the fact that no votes have yet been cast there than any belief that the state is within reach. Most other swing states allow early voting and have had up to 30 percent of the electorate vote already. If McCain can manufacture a last-minute game changer, it will be most effective in Pa.
Comment by John of OH
Why do people rob banks? Because that is where the money is. Why do we tax the wealthy? Same reason. When President Reagan dropped the top tax bracket from 70 percent to 28 percent in the 1980s, it allowed the top income earners to accumulate large amounts of wealth. Over the past 25 years, this has led to the extreme disparity of the top 20 percent owning 80 percent of the wealth in this country and the bottom 20 percent owning 0 percent of the wealth. Remove housing wealth and the disparity becomes even more extreme. The United States now has the most extreme wealth disparity of any G-7 country and the lowest taxes. If there is a natural or optimally fair distribution of tax burden based on wealth, then why wasn't the Reagan tax cut a redistribution of money toward the wealthy? The tax system in the United States is designed to advantage the wealthy, and it needs to be designed to be fair to all citizens.
Comment by John of PA
Assuming that people are only voting for Obama because the value of their home fell is one reason why the Republicans are losing this election. McCain's message is not reaching the educated because it has been an insult to people's intelligence. Continuously throwing out dirt at Obama and trying to make him scary does not work. The proportion of our country's wealth to the top 1 or 2 percent of the country is disproportionately higher than it has ever been in our country's history. There are actually people who think this country should also be about fairness, opportunity, and allowing the hard-working people a decent life.
Comment by Debra of TX