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Obama set to make voting history

But the McCain campaign, fighting to the end in key states, vows it’ll be a ‘slam-bang’ finish.

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“For us, the most important thing is we are seeing newly registered supporters of ours, younger voters, African-American voters, Hispanic voters, which in many states are a base for us turning out at big levels,” said Mr. Plouffe.

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Back in March, at a breakfast hosted by The Christian Science Monitor, GOP pollster Bill McInturff stated that for the Republicans to hold onto the presidency, they would need to win at least 40 percent of the Hispanic vote. Now McCain’s pollster, Mr. McInturff is not highlighting that prediction. And the news from the latest polls is not good for McCain on the Hispanic front, a bloc of voters he hoped to woo with his moderate position on immigration reform.

The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, which shows Obama ahead of McCain overall by eight points, has Obama winning the Latino vote 68 percent to 27 percent. Other polls show that gap even wider.

Other demographic groups where Obama holds a decisive lead includes African-Americans and young voters, those ages 18 to 34 years old. Obama is also winning among independent voters by 10 points, blue-collar voters by 7 points, suburban voters by 5 points, and Catholics by 3 points. McCain leads among evangelical voters by 59 points, senior citizens by 13 points, white men by 12 points, and white women by 1 point.

The poll also found that 30 percent of voters had already voted, and that Obama wins that group, 51 percent to 43 percent. The McCain campaign has argued that many of the early voters are Obama supporters, and that McCain voters will make up the gap on Election Day.

On the final full day of campaigning, Obama harked back to a comment McCain made seven weeks ago that may well prove to be the turning point of the election - that “the fundamentals of our economy are strong.”

“Well, Florida, you and I know that’s not only fundamentally wrong, it also sums up his out-of-touch, on-your-own economic philosophy,” Obama told a crowd in Jacksonville, Fla.

“It’s a philosophy that says we should give a $700,000 tax cut to the average Fortune 500 CEO and $300 billion to the same Wall Street banks that got us into this mess. It’s a philosophy that says we shouldn’t give a penny of relief to more than 100 million middle-class Americans. And it’s a philosophy that will end when I am president of the United States of America.”

McCain summarized his last-day argument in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal: “The presidential election occurs at a pivotal moment. Our nation is fighting two wars abroad, suffers from the greatest global financial crisis since the Great Depression, and is facing a painful recession. I believe in the greatness of America. I believe in our capacity to prosper, and to be safer and remain a beacon of light on the global stage. But we cannot spend the next four years as we have spent much of the last eight: waiting for our luck to change. We have to act immediately. We have to fight for it.”

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