Republican John McCain and Democrat Barack Obama sought to energize voter turnout on Saturday in the final, frenetic weekend of a long and grinding U.S. presidential election campaign, Reuters reported.
McCain spent the day in Virginia and Pennsylvania looking to turn out the vote on Tuesday. Virginia normally votes Republican but appears to be siding with Obama, while McCain is trying to steal traditionally Democratic Pennsylvania from Obama.
Obama, enjoying a lead in national polls and in many key battleground states where the election will be decided, sought a knockout punch in three states that went for President George W. Bush in 2004 -- Nevada, Colorado and Missouri.
Nowhere to be seen on the campaign trail was Bush himself. With a popularity rating below 30 percent, Bush was not asked to campaign for McCain. Obama has consistently sought to portray his opponent as a Bush clone.
The Obama camp gleefully pointed out to reporters that Vice President Dick Cheney had spoken warmly of McCain in remarks in Cheney's home state of Wyoming.
"The last thing Nevadans need right now are four more years just like the last eight. And when it comes to the economy John McCain just promises more of the same," Obama said in Henderson, Nevada.
McCain, in Springfield, Virginia, ridiculed Obama for a line in his stump speech in which the Democrat says his victory in the party's primary had vindicated his faith in the American people.
"He said the other day that his primary victory vindicated his faith in America. My country has never had to prove anything to me, my friends. I've always had faith in America," McCain said. The Obama campaign called McCain's attack "pathetic."
Americans on Tuesday will vote in what amounts to 51 separate elections in each state and the District of Columbia. Each state has a number of electoral votes based on the size of its representation in Congress. Whichever candidate gets 270 electoral votes wins the White House.
They will choose between Illinois Sen. Obama, 47, who would be the country's first black president, and Arizona Sen. McCain, 72, the former Vietnam prisoner of war who would be the oldest person ever elected to a first presidential term.
If current polling is accurate and stands up on Election Day, Obama will win, possibly by a comfortable margin.