In surprisingly warm November air, I walked Lakewood, a suburb city northwest of downtown Denver. My streets were sidewalkless and potholed, the mailboxes nameplated with Lopez, Guzman, Escalante.
“Who you with?” a beard dragging a cigarette challenged as he opened his car door.
“Obama Campaign…getting out the vote,” I replied.
“Yeah, I guessed. McCain…he don’t come here. He never been here. Not this neighborhood.” On my nod, he continued, “I already voted for Obama. So did my lady.” He angled his chin toward the woman in the car, who smiled broadly.
My sample is neither scientific nor large, but the dozens of Hispanic voters with whom I spoke over the last two days were overwhelmingly and enthusiastically for Obama. The concern that Hispanics, erstwhile fans of Hillary, would not turn out for Obama looks to be old news.
Four years ago I canvassed in Reno. This canvass is very different. Voters on both sides seem more concerned, more agitated. As of this morning, 2.6 million people, with turnout heavy among blacks and registered Democrats—almost 41% of all North Carolina’s registered voters—have already cast ballots. This is more than the total number of North Carolinians who voted in the 2004 election.
The winds have shifted.