Pennsylvania’s Political Power?

The presidential election is less than 50 days away, but you might not know it. There aren’t many political ads and no big-name politicians stumping in our neck of the woods this year. Pennsylvania is considered a swing state and we saw a lot of politicking back in 2008.

So what’s changed?

Newswatch 16 spoke with a political scientist who weighed in on what is different this year compared to four years ago.

Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are squaring off in a bid for the presidency of the United States.

There are some congressional elections to consider too, but not much advertising or stumping in our area.

It’s a far cry from four years ago.

Political ads dominated television and political figures made frequent stops in our area.

Pennsylvania is a swing state. Considered key to winning a presidential election.

Dr. Tom Baldino of Wilkes University says despite a lack of ads and appearances so far this year, it’s still an important state for candidates to win.

“It appears that the candidates aren`t interested in Pennsylvania but I think the electorate itself is still interested,” said Dr. Baldino.

Baldino calls this part of Pennsylvania “a battleground area in a battleground state.”

So why do the candidates seem silent in this area?

Baldino says it all comes down to the polls, which have been showing Obama in the lead.

“Now the numbers are showing a trend in Obama`s favor, moving more in Obama`s favor and if you`re Romney or conservatives looking to spend money in a state, why would you put money here in a state that looks like it`s drifting away or trending away?” asked Baldino.

Back in 2008, Baldino called it a “wave” election, when many voters demanded change and there was higher than usual turnout.

He says things could easily heat up here. He expects conservative congressional candidates and Romney to start running ads and do more stumping as the election draws near.

“As we get down in the stretch, Romney and the conservative side will have more money to invest in a state like Pennsylvania,” he said.

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