The West - How the White House Was Won?

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LAS VEGAS - It's just eight days now until America elects a new President.

While much attention has focused on traditional battleground states like Ohio and Florida, it is the mountain West that very well could be the key to who wins The White House.

On the Trail with Obama

Wherever Barack Obama goes in this sprint to the end, the scene's the same: enthusiastic crowds with supporters who smell victory.

Click play for more with CBN News Political Analyst John Waage following this report.

"I think this election is the biggest one and Obama will win," declared one Obama supporter.

Brody: "Is there some excitement in the air here?"

Obama Supporter: "Oh, definitely. Most definitely. Just look at the crowd here. Just look at early voting. Everybody is going early voting. It's been unbelievable."

At a Las Vegas rally, more than 10,000 came to hear Obama's now signature "Change" speech with soaring rhetoric and McCain/Bush comparisons galore.

"I don't know about you but I think we've had enough of Bush/McCain economics. I can take 10 more days of John McCain's attacks, but what the American people can't take is four more years of Bush/McCain economics," Obama told the crowd.

Obama is spending a lot of time here in the mountain West. The key states of Nevada, Colorado and New Mexico are up for grabs. They all went for President Bush four years ago but have been trending more Democratic of late.

The Illinois senator is looking to change the color of all three states from red to blue. It's a key part of his strategy to get to the magical 270 electoral votes to win the presidency.

Obama has held rallies out here in Nevada roughly 20 times since running for President. It has translated into a very small lead.

In order for Obama to actually win out here he's going to have to appeal to Hispanics and do better than previous Democrats have done in the rural areas of this state.

Polls show Obama doing well with the growing Hispanic voting block in this region. One out of every four people in Nevada are Hispanic. And Latinos could end up being a significant 15 percent of the vote. 

Meanwhile at Camp McCain…

At Republican headquarters in Las Vegas, the Spanish cold calling on behalf of John Mccain is in full gear.

And at McCain's latino headquarters, volunteers are handing out flyers like such as: "Voters Guide for Serious Christians." It's in English and Spanish.

"This one tells you about Senator McCain's position on the dignity of the human life," said one McCain volunteer.

Traditional values are important to Hispanics, so Hispanic leaders in the McCain camp see an opportunity to connect on issues like marriage and abortion.

"What really focuses our life is our family. It is our values," said Tibi Ellis, an Hispanic who is a supporter of McCain.

"We practice more Christian religions than any other community. And so if you take a look at that and if we are true to what we believe on then there is no questions about it," Ellis said. "We have to vote for Senator McCain which is the conservative candidate."

On the campaign trail out West this weekend in Colorado and New Mexico, McCain spoke of other values too. He's hitting Obama hard on taxes.

"Sen. Obama'a tax increase would put more people out of work," McCain charged. "We have seen this before it doesn't work. We can't let that happen."

Both candidates are pushing hard out West. With 19 key electoral votes in these three key states up for grabs, can McCain defend red state turf or will Obama recast the electoral map? America will find out in a week.

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CBN News
David Brody

David Brody

CBN News Sr. National Correspondent

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