Only in Real America

In an interview with CNN today, Sarah Palin apologized for her recent remarks at a fundraiser in North Carolina about "the real America," the "hard-working, very patriotic, very pro-America areas of this great nation."

Asked by CNN's Drew Griffin if there are parts of the country that are "more American" than other parts, Palin said she did not want her comments to be "misunderstood."

"You know, when I go to these rallies and we see the, the patriotism just shining through these people's faces and the, the Vietnam veterans wearing their hats so proudly and they have tears in their eyes as we sing our national anthem…it is so inspiring," Palin said. "I say that this is true America, you get it. You understand how important it is that in the next four years we have a leader who will fight for you. I certainly don't want that interpreted as one area being more patriotic or more American than another. If that's the way it's come across, I apologize."

Poll numbers from the so-called real and not-real parts of America continue to show that John McCain is defending more states than he is playing offense in and the already narrow path to 270 for the Republican ticket may be shrinking even more.

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos reports that Democrats sources say the McCain camp may be giving up on two more blue states - New Hampshire and Wisconsin.

Per Stephanopoulos, the McCain campaign is stretching out previous ad buys over more days rather than devote new ad money instead of placing new television advertising buys there.

"No denial from the McCain camp. One source said simply, 'We are on the air in those states.'"

Stephanopoulos also reports that ad buyers in Colorado are seeing the same dynamic: no new McCain ad buys and stretching out the old ones.

After a three-event swing through the Keystone State today, McCain meets up with his running mate for two events in Ohio. The McCain-Palin ticket holds a rally in Green, a city in Summit County in northeastern Ohio, which went for Kerry by 14 points in 2004 (57-43). Later the GOP ticket holds a joint rally in Cincinnati.

Obama is in not-real Virginia on Wednesday, with rallies in Richmond and Leesburg. ABC News' Steven Portnoy spent some time in two key areas of this battleground state – Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia – and found that the political dynamics seem to be leaning toward Obama.

Portnoy reports: "Throughout two days of interviews conducted at random, in both northern and southeastern parts of this traditionally Republican state, it was much more difficult to find supporters of John McCain than Barack Obama."

ABC News/Washington Post tracking poll Day 2:
The horserace remains unchanged from Monday – Obama holds a 53-44 lead over McCain. Today's lede: how first-time voters are giving Obama his clear advantage over McCain.

Per ABC News Polling Director Gary Langer, first-time voters favor Obama by a lopsided 73-26. Four years ago, first-timers backed John Kerry by seven points.

Among people who have voted in previous elections, Obama leads McCain 50-47.

But Langer gives a word of caution for the Obama campaign: "Turnout among first-time voters is challenging to predict, since they're clearly not in the habit. That means targeted get-out-the-vote efforts can matter particularly with this group – not just in how many vote, but in how those who do vote divide between the candidates."

Tivo Alert! Palin sits down for an interview with NBC's Brian Williams, completing the network anchor trifecta.

On the campaign front. . .

-- 9:30 am ET: Holds Rally in Goffstown, NH.
-- 3:30 pm ET: Holds Rally in Green, OH.
-- 6:30 pm ET: Holds Rally in Cincinnati, OH.

-- 10:00 am ET: Holds Rally in Findlay, OH.
-- 3:30 pm ET: Holds Rally in Green, OH.
-- 6:30 pm ET: Holds Rally in Cincinnati, OH.

-- 12:15 pm ET: Holds Rally in Richmond, VA.
-- 5:30 pm ET: Holds Rally in Leesburg, VA.

-- 11:30 am ET: Holds Rally in Jacksonville, FL.
-- 2:30 pm ET: Holds Rally in Gainesville, FL.

-- 12:30 am ET: Holds community gathering Colorado Springs, CO.
-- 4:45 am PM: Holds Rally in Pueblo, CO.

At the White House. . .

-- 10:20 am ET: Meets with the president of Liberia. Oval Office.


ABC News' George Stephanopoulos: McCain Scaling Back in Wisconsin and New Hampshire? LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper and Sunlen Miller: Obama Takes 2 Days Off to See Ailing Grandmother LINK

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos: Don't Bet on Lame-Duck Stimulus Package LINK

ABC News' Tahman Bradley: Obama Enters Final Stretch Leading in Cash LINK

ABC News' Jennifer Parker: Political Prank or Partisan Attack? Partisan Vandals Target Campaign Signs LINK

ABC News' Russell Goldman: Minority Voters to Make Major Impact in Swing States LINK

ABC News' Sam Donaldson: Reflects on the Times Through the Lens of Kirk Kerkorian LINK

ABC News' Teddy Davis and Ferdous Al-Faruque: AFL-CIO Targets West Virginia for Obama LINK

ABC News' Teddy Davis and Hope Ditto: Firefighters Whack McCain for Taxing Benefits LINK

ABC News' Jason Ryan: Powell's Obama Endorsement Raised at Stevens Corruption Trial LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper and Imtiyaz Delawala: Palin on the Pending Crises 'President Obama' May Face LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper: Why Is McCain Spending So Much Time in Pennsylvania? LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper: Sick Hateful People Against Obama LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper: …And How Transparent Are the Republicans Being with Their Small Donors? LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper: Salter: 'He is the Old McCain. He Just Doesn't Know What Happened to the Old Press Corps' LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper: Those Undisclosed Obama Donors LINK

ABC News' Jake Tapper and Sunlen Miller: Grandmother Ailing, Obama to Hop Off Campaign Trail Thursday and Friday and Fly to Hawaii LINK


Muslims for McCain Fight Back
McCain supporters take on dirty campaigning against Obama in battleground Va. LINK

Murtha: Western Pa. Is 'Redneck'
Rep. Murtha tries to explain remarks on racism, calling some Pa. voters redneck. LINK

Sarah Palin vs. The Joker
The governor rivals a comic book villain for most popular Halloween costume. LINK

GOP Hammers Biden for 'Crisis' Remarks
Lindsey Graham, John McCain and Sarah Palin criticize Biden on 'crisis' comment. LINK

Palin Slams Obama for Biden's 'Crisis' Remarks
Palin chides the Dem ticket for Biden's remarks about a pending crisis. LINK

Palin Slams Obama for Biden's 'Crisis' Remarks
Palin chides the Dem ticket for Biden's remarks about a pending crisis. LINK

Whoopi Blasts Obama Critics
"The View" co-host says criticism of the senator's tax plan is "crap." LINK

McCain: Obama Flip-Flopping on World Series
"I'm not dumb enough to get mixed up in a World Series between swing states." LINK

Financial Crisis Through Lens of a Billionaire
ABC's Sam Donaldson looks at Wall Street's effect on investor Kirk Kerkorian. LINK

Obama's Grandma 'Toot'
Meet the woman who helped raise the Illinois senator. LINK

14 Days and Counting
Political advisers Robert Gibbs and Nicolle Wallace discuss the campaign. LINK

Jake Tapper on Obama's Break
The Democratic candidate is taking time off to visit his grandmother. LINK

Living in a Swing State
See what it's like to be among the most heavily courted voters in the country. LINK

Obama Campaign on Hold
Obama puts his campaign on hold to visit ailing grandmother. LINK

Former Rivals Campaign Together
Obama and Clinton agree to a joint interview. LINK

Nailing the Election
Political manicures are all the rage at one Pennsylvania salon. LINK

McCain Tours Battleground Missouri
In a dead-heat key state, McCain and Palin attack Obama's economic policy. LINK