Usually when a Philadelphia fan is throwing something, it is in contempt. Angry Philly fans lobbing snowballs at Santa Claus or chucking batteries at players come to mind. But on Sunday, a fanatic who was reportedly enamored with Barack Obama threw a book at the president with the hopes of lobbing it on his reading list. Obama chose Philadelphia to campaign because he is still liked there, and he needs to fire up the base. It's unclear whether strategy will work, but Democrats are banking on the base getting their candidates to 50 plus one in the pivotal races. They're hoping Philly activists will phone bank, door-knock, donate, and vote for Joe Sestak and endangered Keystone State Democrats.
In the next week, Obama will travel to a slew of progressive cities and blue states, including Boston, Cleveland, Portland, Seattle and Los Angeles.
Contrast those trips with 2008 when he campaigned in places like exurban Bristow, Va., in an effort to win independent swing voters; or in 2009, when the president visited Ft. Myers, Fla., Elkhart, Ind., and East Peoria, Ill. in an effort to hold the center by signaling he had the economic situation under control.
This weekend I drove through northeastern Pennsylvania, where incumbent Reps. Paul Kanjorski (11th) and Chris Carney (10th) are fighting for their seats and are considered "toss-ups" by Cook. Did Obama visit the hamelts and hills of the Poconos to rally support for those Democrats? No, he rallied with the hip-hop band The Roots in Philly.
The map below from Political Intelligence shows that Obama chose the place in Pennsylvania with the most Democrats: