Obama Campaign Guru Lends Strickland A Hand

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In a Cleveland union hall full of supporters, Governor Strickland repeated the charges he's been making against Republican challenger John Kasich for months - that's he's in the pocket of Wall Street, that he's in favor of offshoring jobs, and that his election would mean a return to Bush era policies. He told the crowd that Republicans have enjoyed a good run of publicity and positive polls, but that's turning around.

STRICKLAND: "They peaked too early. And in Ohio, they may have won the election in August, but we're going to win it in November."

That's in line with Democrats' relatively recent strategy of bringing a national political message to state elections. After the rally, former Obama campaign brain David Plouffe, who is travelling the country lending support to embattled Democrats, said Ohio is mirroring what's occuring in other states.

PLOUFFE: "Elections in America for the most part are close. And these will be close too. But the Republicans right now are trading as high as they can. Their turnout's not going to get any higher, their share of the independent vote's not going to get any higher. We have nowhere to go but up, and as the governor said, we're beginning to see that here in Ohio."

Indeed, the latest poll by Reuters puts Strickland in a virtual dead heat with Kasich, trailing by just one percentage point. That's a big shift from polls in the last few weeks that put Kasich ahead by as much as 17 points.

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