That's right, all the events, all the fundraisers, all the rallies that POTUS has attended haven't actually been part of his campaign. Or so we're supposed to believe. We've seen rallies in favor of the Buffett rule, college-campus events touting student loan rate subsidies, and other pet projects that President Obama has attended in the last month or so - and the Administration wants us to believe that these weren't all campaign events.
In reality, President Obama has been in campaign mode for months. The DNC and the President have raised $244 million already, and that's supposedly without actually being on campaign. Republicans are worried that they'll have to contend with an Obama war chest in excess of $1 billion. If the President can raise almost a quarter of that without campaigning, just imagine what he can do when he actually kicks off his campaign!
The President is going to Virginia and Ohio this weekend in hopes of bolstering his numbers. Obama leads Mitt Romney in both of those states. Townhall's Poll Tracker puts Obama up by two points in Virginia and by four points in Ohio. These are pivotal swing states that Obama hopes to win, and Mitt Romney can't afford to lose both of these to the President if he's going to stand a chance in November.
The importance of Ohio and Virginia are, in part, what's driving speculation over a VP pick for Romney. Ohio Sen. Rob Portman and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell are both seen as top-tier candidates for the second spot on the GOP ticket. They're popular in their respective states and have proven effective campaigners. The Romney campaign, for its part, is planning on hitting both states in the wake of Obama's rallies, circling the campaign bus in Ohio and sending surrogates to the Virginia event.
So, Obama's campaign gets its "official" kick-off this weekend in the wake of months of campaigning. He could use a boost; while he leads Romney in Virginia and Ohio, yesterday's jobs numbers didn't exactly help. If the sluggish economic recovery doesn't accelerate anytime soon, voters will blame the man running the country.
Jay Carney: Obama Would 'Prefer' to See Clinton as Democratic Presidential Nominee Over Sanders | Leah Barkoukis