From NBC's Mark Murray and Lauren Appelbaum and NBC/NJ's Athena Jones
In a conference call with reporters this morning, Obama manager David Plouffe announced that the campaign was going with ads in McCain's home state of Arizona, as well as in the red states of Georgia and North Dakota.
Plouffe said that these three states were enough in the "realm of possibility" that the campaign wanted to put an "extra effort" in them in the final days. "We think things have tightened up in Arizona," he said. "As I mentioned, we are running a positive ad there. It is Sen. McCain's home state; we are cognizant of that. But we think a positive ad there can help make the case."
Plouffe added, "If someone else had been the Republican nominee, I think Arizona would be a core battleground, like its western neighbors. Obviously, it is Sen. McCain's home sate, so he is going to over perform there a little bit."
Also on the call, Plouffe said the Obama campaign was looking strong in the state of Colorado, Iowa, Nevada, New Mexico, and Virginia. And he said that they saw paths to victory in Florida, Indiana, Missouri, and Ohio.
What's more, Plouffe said the campaign is pleased with the early vote numbers they are seeing in several states, particularly in North Carolina, Colorado, and Nevada.