Quote of the day

In a potential battleground, the issue of race rears its head.

Published September 8, 2008 6:40PM (EDT)

Via my friend Daniel McQuade of Philadelphia Weekly, here's a snippet from a really interesting Philadelphia Daily News account of a visit Joe Biden made to northeast Philadelphia on Friday:

In a corner booth, Biden sat down and, after a moment's conversation, planted a kiss on the forehead of Carolyn Bauer, age 89. Bauer explained afterward it wasn't such a friendly encounter.

"I told him I'm not going to vote for him," Bauer said. "Anybody who runs with a guy with a name like that is not going to get my vote. It'd be disgusting to get a man named Barack Obama as president of the United States. No way. I mean it ... I'm going to vote for McCain and the lady."

"[Obama's] a Muslim," Bauer added. "He pretends to be a Christian, and he isn't, he's a Muslim."

That sort of thing is, to put it mildly, not something Obama's campaign wants to hear, especially where Biden was. Despite a large Catholic (and antiabortion) population, northeast Philly has been turning blue of late -- John Kerry won there in 2004 -- but it might well be key to any chance John McCain has of taking Pennsylvania. In the Democratic primary earlier this year, Hillary Clinton won the area by a large margin.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

MORE FROM Alex Koppelman

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2008 Elections Barack Obama John Mccain R-ariz.