The White House yesterday pushed back on conclusions from the WSJ that Obama is traveling to battleground states on the taxpayer dime more than W did. The explanation, said spokesman Jay Carney, is there are more battleground states than there used to be. From the Hill:
Carney said the logic of the article is flawed because Obama “expanded the political map dramatically,” and states including Virginia and North Carolina, which were not considered battleground states when former president George W. Bush visited them in 2003, are now in play for Democrats.
Carney argued that Bush traveled far more often to the traditional battleground states of Ohio, Wisconsin and Florida, and that it was unfair to count Obama’s visits to states that he “made competitive” for Democrats.
“The suggestion that [Obama] can’t make official travel to any state that is considered contested or close, we reject that,” Carney said.
The discussion was sparked by Obama's visit to Scranton tomorrow. Excitement for the visit, according to the Pocono Record, isn't exactly overwhelming:
When Hillary Clinton was on the campaign trail in 2008 and spoke at Scranton High School, the line to get tickets a few days before her appearance stretched about 1,000 people long.
Monday's line to grab the available free tickets to President Barack Obama's speech Wednesday was noticeably shorter — about 225 people were waiting when the doors opened for the distribution.
The Republican National Committee has compiled a long list of Scranton/economic policy stories here called "Obama's Failed Scranton Promises."