If John Kerry looked out the window of his black Suburban as his motorcade made its way into downtown Milwaukee just now, he would have seen Air Force One flying right overhead. George W. Bush left Milwaukee just as Kerry arrived, a crossing of paths that underscored the importance of Wisconsin's 10 Electoral College votes.
A few thousand supporters turned out to hear Kerry speak in a steady rain. As reporters stood in two inches of water inside the press tent -- a condition that didn't stop Ted Koppel from sinking his chops into a bratwurst -- Kerry told supporters that he'd never forget this day in Milwaukee. It's a "magical moment," Kerry said, the time for Americans to give voice to their "hopes and dreams."
"I've heard your struggles, and I share your hopes," Kerry said. "Tomorrow we have a chance to move America forward, to make a difference in the lives of so many Americans and the character of our country itself." As he will at each stop today, Kerry called on his supporters to get out the vote. "Here we are, 24 hours from the great moment America and the world are waiting for. I need you in these hours to go out and do the hard work. Go out and make those phone calls, talk to friends, take people to the polls. Help us change the direction of this great nation."
Kerry will return to Wisconsin after midnight tonight so that he can push for same-day voter registrations in LaCrosse Tuesday morning. For now, though, the campaign moves on to Detroit, where Kerry will shore up support in a state that's critical to his Electoral College math.