Pa. governor’s race down to turnout?

    There comes a point in every political campaign when the combatants decide they’ve convinced anybody convincible to vote for them, and it’s time to move from messaging to turnout.

    Maybe that time has come.

    Though Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett’s and Democrat Tom Wolf continue to pump out TV ads, we’re not seeing much in the way of new messages. I’ve been away a few days, and even though issued a blistering critique of Corbett’s attacks on Wolf, the governor’s campaign continues to portray Wolf as a man committed to raising your taxes through the roof.

    Wolf continues to swing back, but we also see his campaign bringing in a series of celebrity Democrats to lure big crowds and fire up the base for a turnout Nov. 4. Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama have already visited Philadelphia, and Bill Clinton and President Obama  are expected to make appearances — Clinton in Pittsburgh Monday and the prez at a site yet to be announced.

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    And the Corbett campaign has a new web ad jumping on Wolf’s use of the world “forward” as  a way of casting him as a clone of Obama (yeah, seems a little strained to me too). The point is to tap core Republicans’ hatred for the president and inspire them to donate, talk up the election at the coffee shop, and above all, vote.

    And a new Republican poll has emerged that says the guv has closed to within seven points of Wolf. The Magellan poll has a sampling methodology that has consistently shown Corbett closer to Wolf than traditional university polls. We’ll see what they say in their final polls next week, but the release of the Republican poll could itself be an attempt to boost Republican turnout. If the race seems close, GOP voters are more likely to get to the polls, which is important for Republican legislative candidates.

    And about those issues

    If you’re just starting to pay serious attention to the race, WHYY is airing and publishing a series of stories on radio and the web exploring key issues in the governor’s race. 

    Our ace education reporter Kevin McCorry has a great look at the dispute over education funding, and Keystone Crossroads reporter Marielle Segarra has this piece on the candidates records and proposals on job creation.

    In the coming days, we’ll bore into the issues of taxes and fiscal policy, as well as energy and environmental issues, and we’ll present profiles of the two Toms in the race. Listen for them on NewsWorks Tonight at 6 and read them on NewsWorks, and you’ll be a more informed voter.

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