DENVER -- She may not be the one on stage today, but Hillary Clinton was an unmistakable presence up there in Springfield with Barack Obama and Joe Biden.
The message, the tone, the strategic posturing for the fall -- major elements of the first Obama-Biden event of the campaign were positively Clinton-esque. It was almost as if the populist campaign she waged in the last months of the Democratic primary race had been reignited under the bright afternoon sun of central Illinois.
In the primary, Clinton couldn't go an hour without pitching herself as the kind of "fighter" America's middle-class families need. Today, Obama pitched Biden as "the kind of fighter who I want by my side in the months and years to come."
"Thatís what itís going to take to win the fight for good jobs that let people live their dreams, a tax code that rewards work instead of wealth, and health care that is affordable and accessible for every American family," Obama said.
Obama also dubbed Biden "that scrappy kid from Scranton who beat the odds." Scranton, remember, was the home of Clinton's father's family, and she rooted herself firmly in that working-class ancestry to win big in in the Pennsylvania primary. It seems pretty clear Biden plans on doing the same.
In fact, he's already started. He didn't pass up the chance today to knock John McCain for his many houses, quipping that before McCain could understand families' kitchen-table issues, he'd have to figure out which of his own kitchen tables to sit at.
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.