Ballot Box - NBC Chicago

Ballot Box

A guide to the best political buzz from around the web

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    There are 12 days until the election and an Obama presidency seems all the more likely. The final ruling on Palin is that she's a liability and Joe the Plumber has become more of a punch line than a talking point. Today's buzz:

    • An Obama Presidency would change the American 'brand' abroad, wrote Nicholas Kristof  in the NYT. Take-away: "If this election goes as the polls suggest, we may find a path to restore America's global influence - and thus to achieve some of our international objectives - in part because the world is concluding that Americans can, after all, see beyond a person's epidermis."
    • McCain has one last chance to create doubt about Obama and show that America would be better off with a tested politician leading the nation through the turbulent economic waters, wrote Karl Rove in the WSJ. Take-away: "Mr. McCain has only one hope: to drive home doubts about Mr. Obama based on his record, and share as much as he can about his own values and vision to reassure voters."
    • The GOP's divisive rhetoric isn't working because the Americans that Republicans are pandering to are becoming further removed from reality, wrote Rose Brooks in the LAT. Take-away: "With each passing year, the 'real' America of GOP mythmaking bears less and less resemblance to the America most Americans live in."
    • Obama and his messages of "hope" and "change" are still unclear, wrote Victor Davis Hanson in the National Review online.  Take-away: "Voters apparently still don't know who Obama is, or what he wants to do -- and so are still not altogether sure that Obama is the proper antidote to George W. Bush. After more than a year of campaigning, he still remains an enigma."
    • Could McCain's visit to New Hampshire on Wednesday have been his last? With polls trending Democrat, it's a  very real possibility for the candidate, wrote John Dickerson in Slate. Take-away: "McCain was back in nearly the same spot, hoping for the same kind of magic that helped him come from behind to win the last two Republican primaries in New Hampshire."