Alaska: Obama Fishing for Votes in the Last Frontier

Alaskans for Obama: A Rare Democratic Push in the Last Frontier (Washington Post)

By Karl Vick
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, August 5, 2008; Page A04

ANCHORAGE — In what might be the fullest realization of Barack Obama’s pledge to run hard in parts of the country largely untouched by presidential campaigning, the Democrat’s Alaska operation is making plans for organizers to hopscotch the state’s vast and sparsely populated interior by bush plane, knocking on doors in remote outposts for their candidate.

“Go around, put up signs, shake some hands, see some of the important people in the village,” said state representative and professional pilot Woodie Salmon (D), describing his own campaign tactics in a legislative district that includes 94 villages, 70 of which can be reached only by air. “Get things stirred up and leave again.”

Conservative and quirky, Alaska last went for a Democratic presidential candidate 44 years ago. No nominee from either party has even visited since Richard Nixon’s journey to glad-hand in Anchorage on the last weekend of the 1960 campaign, a stop that some argue cost him the razor-thin election.

Obama, who often boasts of having visited the other 49 states, has yet to commit to a stop here. But his vibrant campaign operation here is stoking expectations and mounting the most prodigious presidential effort Alaska has seen. Read More.

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