Obama’s Florida Bet

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Politico reports this morning that Al and Tipper Gore will campaign for Obama tomorrow in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach – the first time the former vice president has stumped for a presidential candidate in the Sunshine State since his narrow loss there cost him the presidency in 2000.

The Goracle’s trip comes after Obama held a midnight rally with Bill Clinton last night and broadcast live before 20,000 Sunrise, Floridians and millions of Americans for his 30-minute commercial. This morning we’ve just landed in Sarasota where Obama is scheduled to hold an early voting rally.

All of this points to an Obama bet that Florida could be an early clincher for him. Polls here close 7pm EST and if he takes Florida and simply holds the rest of Kerry’s 2004 states it’s game over for McCain. A DCCC source says to keep an eye on the vulnerable GOP Miami House races for an early indicator on how Dems are playing there on Election Night.

Early voting looks promising for Obama where registered Dems are outpacing GOP voters 45.4% to 39.0%, though there’s no way of telling which way those ballots were cast. Obama holds a 3.5% lead in the RCP average and a 4% lead in our latest poll. And, taking no chances, Obama deployed his ground game guru Steve Hildebrand to Miami three weeks ago. Also lurking around the Sunshine State: Paul Tewes, the guy who won Iowa for him and had been Obama’s liaison to the DNC, who’s been hanging out at Obama’s Tampa HQ. (Both men are mailing in their day jobs from Florida).

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