By David Sessions, Slate Magazine
The war on terror shares front-page real estate with Barack Obama, whose recent world tour gets A1 analysis in both the WP and the LAT. The Post wonders if the trip, widely considered a success, will have any real payoff for Obama. The candidate himself openly told the paper he hoped it would have an impressionistic effect on voters later in the game: “Hopefully, it gives voters a sense that I can in fact—and do—operate effectively on the international stage,” Obama said. “That may not be decisive for the average voter right now, given our economic troubles, but it’s knowledge they can store in the back of their minds for when they go into the polling place later.” The LAT piece quotes Obama strategist David Axelrod, speaking with a remarkable frankness about the theater aspect of the trip (“Any campaign, in part, is about whether people can picture a candidate in that role”). The Times also notes that a Thursday Fox News poll shows Obama slipping to within a “statistically insignificant” margin over John McCain.