As the Obama juggernaut continues to pull ahead of an increasingly shaky (but well-dressed) McCain-Palin campaign, some are already calling the presidential election a sure-thing for the Illinois senator. But can the Democratic camp hold steady for these final nine days, or will they be pipped at the post by a last-minute surge from Team Maverick? Crikey keeps you up-to-date with all the latest news and polls, plus the best reports, analysis and videos from the campaign trail, at our Campaign Crikey live news page and blog.

In our weekly wrap of the US Sunday morning talk shows:

John McCain declares “I am not George Bush”

Karl Rove dismisses the polls. All 177 of them.

Our daily pick of the best commentary and analysis, as featured on our website:

Alaska’s largest paper endorses Obama. Gov. Palin’s nomination clearly alters the landscape for Alaskans as we survey this race for the presidency — but it does not overwhelm all other judgment. The election, after all is said and done, is not about Sarah Palin, and our sober view is that her running mate, Sen. John McCain, is the wrong choice for president at this critical time for our nation. — Anchorage Daily News

The ultimate rejection. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell, conservative commentator Christopher Buckley and others have cited Republican presidential nominee John McCain’s selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin in explaining their reasons for rejecting the Republican ticket and backing Democrats Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Now comes the ultimate rejection. The largest newspaper in Alaska, a publication that has often sided with and encouraged Palin over the years, has endorsed the Democratic ticket. — The Nation

Obama’s endgame is no sure thing. Both sides believe the race is not over, but each acknowledges that the Illinois senator has the upper hand, with multiple scenarios to reach the 270 electoral votes needed to win. He leads in every state he must carry and several that McCain can’t afford to lose, including Colorado, Ohio and Virginia. — Los Angeles Times

Point of no return. Senator Obama’s feeble passivity will get you a big round of applause precisely because it’s the easy option: Do nothing but hold hands and sing the easy listening anthems of one-worldism, and the planet will heal. — Mark Steyn, National Review

Palin on immigration. What Palin’s response shows is that, first, she’s completely open to whatever kool-aid they want her to drink — i.e., she has no innate resistance to amnesty for illegals that would cause her to look for less-unappealing ways of saying what the campaign wants her to say. And second, it shows what the campaign is telling her about McCain’s views on the issue — if McCain’s talk of “border security first” were anything but boob bait for Bubba, his operatives would have made it clear that Palin was supposed to include that in her discussion of immigration, but she didn’t even make a passing reference to it. — The Corner, National Review

Lawyers the best hope for an honest election. With an estimated 9 million new voters registered, lawyers on each side will be ghost-busting their election nightmare of choice: Democrats claim Republicans seek to suppress the vote—particularly student and minority votes—through polling-place intimidation, threatening robo calls, and illegal voter-roll purges. Republicans respond—indeed John McCain expressly announced at the final debate—that Democrats are “destroying the fabric of democracy” by signing up Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Daisy, who will all then vote in coordinated efforts to steal the election. — Slate

How the press reported the election. Coverage of McCain has been heavily unfavorable—and has become more so over time. In the six weeks following the conventions through the final debate, unfavorable stories about McCain outweighed favorable ones by a factor of more than three to one—the most unfavorable of all four candidates. — Journalism.org

The latest election coverage on the Crikey blogs:

Bob Carr’s one-sided view of Obama — Trevor Cook, Corporate Engagement
Presidential election minus 10 daysThe Poll Bludger
Election results un-maskedUS election blog

The best clips from our US election video wrap — posted daily on the Crikey US election blog:

Obama gives a rousing speech in Virginia
Richie Cunningham and the Fonz endorse Obama

Peter Fray

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