Voters in West Virginia are widely expected to hand Hillary Clinton a huge, if moot, victory on Tuesday. Barack Obama will deal with the predicted hiccup by avoiding it altogether. The presumptive Democratic nominee will not be in the state and he will not give a speech, hoping that superdelegates either don’t notice or don’t care.

Obama did spend some time in the state, and even ran a commercial or two, but his campaigning was widely considered a token gesture.

New York Times:

Senator Barack Obama, expecting a shellacking on Tuesday, is ramping up his effort to behave like a general election candidate with a visit to Cape Girardeau, in the potential swing state of Missouri, for a town hall meeting later in the day.

The Lieutenant Gov. Peter Kinder called him, “the hardest left candidate ever nominated for president of the United States.”

But Mr. Obama’s campaign seemed to welcome the fight, not only as the hoped-for start of his campaign’s next phase, but also as a welcome distraction from the primary in West Virginia. The campaign is girding for a huge loss that it hopes will not provide a comeback storyline for Senator Hillary Clinton’s sagging campaign fortunes.

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