Barack Obama at Vance-Aycock in Asheville

{c/p @ ScruHoo}

After driving like a banshee hopped up on DayQuil and Amp, I rolled into the annual Vance-Aycock Dinner at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, North Carolina hoping to catch a glimpse of Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama. The event was filled to the gills with every candidate and party insider you can imagine. I’ll get lots of photos up at some point, but the star of the show was the rumor that Obama would appear at the dinner. I expected to wait two hours for Obama to come in after the keynote speaker, Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen, but I was happily surprised when a cluster of national press corps folks formed a rampart at the rope line leading to the stage. In just a couple of minutes, out strode Barack Obama. I shot as much video as the Canon Powershot would allow and bolted out of the Grove Park to upload it at Chez Arratik. Now I’m gone again, back to see what’s what.

The video will be posted here as soon as it processes through the UToobz. For photos check out Scrutiny Hooligans and Ashvegas.

UPDATED with video after the jump

National Repub officials: Liddy "almost certain to lose"

We already knew the Repubs were running scared--but get a load of this. Republican leaders and McCain campaign spokesmen think Liddy Dole will be out of a job.

The possibility that Democrats will build a muscular, 60-seat Senate majority is looking increasing plausible, with new polls showing a powerful surge for the party’s candidates in Minnesota, Kentucky and other states.

A poll out Friday shows Sen. Norm Coleman could now easily lose his Minnesota seat to comedian-turned-candidate Al Franken. A Colorado race that initially looked like a nail-biter has now broken decisively for the Democrats. A top official in the McCain camp told us Sen. Elizabeth Dole is virtually certain to lose in conservative North Carolina.

Wow. I have to admit I didn't expect this.

If You Haven't Canvassed Yet...With Special Bonus Obama Ad

A few weeks back I posted a diary titled How Can I Be a Better Volunteer for the Obama Campaign? , where I asked for advice on how to deal with my overall shyness and inexperience when it came to volunteering. I received many great responses, and the support of the community was inspiring and empowering.

A couple of weeks ago, I finally got up the gumption to volunteer, participating in a community canvass on a Sunday afternoon. I initially worried that I'd be sent out into some neighborhood alone, not knowing what the hell I was doing. But that was hardly the case.

Meanwhile, back in the 10th

Daniel Johnson is seriously taking it to lil' Pat McHenry. If I thought prayin' would help, I'd be down on my knees asking some body to intervene and rid that district of McHenry's corrupt and hate-filled ways.

But in what is expected to be a good year for Democrats, political newcomer Daniel Johnson - a decorated Navy veteran and a double amputee - is making a solid run at 10th District Rep. Patrick McHenry, the youngest member of the House and an aggressive conservative who gleefully needles the opposition.

McCrory on health care, a photocopy of....John McCain?

John McCain has a lousy health care plan. A lousy plan. As Joe Biden described last night.

Pat McCrory supports this fantasy, free-market health care plan, and what's more he thinks that when you do go into the open market there shouldn't be "mandates". Right, because mandates are like taxes - they are the boogey man. Or, are they?


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