By NEHEMIAH MEKONNEN and DAVID KERLEY
President Obama is once again engaged in intense debate preparation at his resort in Williamsburg, Va., getting ready for his rematch with Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
“I’m not going to get into details about strategic changes that he might make. But I just encourage you to watch and show up. I think it will be an interesting debate,” Obama senior campaign strategist David Axelrod said.
The president is under pressure to make a strong showing in the rematch, especially after polls are beginning to show Romney edging closer to Obama in the swing states.
“I don’t think in the history of recorded presidential debates has there been such a momentum shift off of the first presidential debate. And so the president has to turn the momentum back in his direction,” former presidential debate coach Brett O’Donnell said.
That still has not stopped the president from taking time out to enjoy the scenery in between prep sessions. Meanwhile, the Romney camp is preparing for a different Obama to emerge this time around.
But to senior Romney campaign adviser Ed Gillespie, the president’s message will fail to reach most Americans, regardless of which Obama shows up on Tuesday.
“The country is a center-right country,” he said. “They want to have less federal spending. They want to get us on a path to a balanced budget. They want free enterprise-driven economy that fosters job creation, not a government-centered economy that fosters economic stagnation.”
As the campaign is drawing down to its last few weeks and both candidates are at their locations practicing, the president’s celebrity friends are stepping up to show their support. Morgan Freeman is lending his voice to a new ad for the president. And Bill Clinton and Bruce Springsteen are campaigning in the crucial state of Ohio, all in an effort to those few voters who are undecided in the crucial swing state.