Democrats Dodge Convention, Obama to Campaign in Districts
Tuesday, September 4, 2012 07:55 AM
By: Martin Gould
Democrats in tight election battles are choosing to skip their party convention this week, staying at home instead.
Some feel that even being seen in the same room where Barack Obama will be feted before receiving the nomination for the presidency may hurt them. Others believe their time is better spent in their districts courting potential voters.
Among those giving Charlotte a miss are Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri. The seeming long shot for re-election has been given a boost by the comments about rape and abortion by her opponent Rep. Todd Akin.
Sen. Jon Tester of Montana will also leave the hype and hoopla of the convention, ABC News reports, as will two candidates, Richard Carmona of Arizona and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota. Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia — a frequent critic of the Obama administration — is also not going, even though he is not up for re-election this year.
Among House candidates, Rep. Larry Kissell of North Carolina would only have to travel a couple of blocks outside his district to get to the Time Warner Cable Arena, but has no plans to make the short journey.
Reps. Nick Rahall of West Virginia, Jim Matheson of Utah, Mark Critz of Pennsylvania and John Barrow of Georgia are also confirmed no-shows, along with several candidates hoping to win election.
Other notable absentees, according to ABC News, are Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Attorney General Eric Holder, whose non-political offices preclude them from party events; former vice-president Al Gore who will anchor convention coverage for Current TV from New York, and California Gov. Jerry Brown who is mourning the loss of his father-in-law who died last week.