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Obama: Leadership moment

“President Obama gets sky-high marks for his response to Hurricane Sandy,” according to a Washington Post-ABC poll. More: Nearly eight in 10 likely voters say the president has done an ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ job dealing with what’s been labeled a ‘super storm.’ Almost as many give positive reviews to the federal government’s response generally. Even two-thirds of those who support Republican Mitt Romney in next week’s presidential election say Obama is doing well in this area.”

“President Obama got to do something the past three days that Republican challenger Mitt Romney can't do and that Obama hasn't had much time to do in the heat of the campaign: govern,” USA Today writes. “Whether it was promising a robust federal response to Hurricane Sandy from the White House briefing room Monday, comforting victims at an American Red Cross office Tuesday or touring hard-hit areas with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Wednesday, Obama stayed above the partisan fray of a dead-heat campaign.”

“President Obama will return to the campaign trail on Thursday with only five days remaining before the election, visiting the battleground states of Wisconsin, Nevada, and Colorado,” the Boston Globe writes, adding, “Obama will speak in Green Bay, Las Vegas and Boulder, after touring storm damage in New Jersey on Wednesday with Republican Governor Chris Christie.”

“The president’s advisers insist his break from campaigning had minimal impact on his standing. If anything, it gave Obama a chance to offer the type of comfort and command in a crisis that only a president can deliver,” AP writes. “Still, the Democratic campaign is seeking to make up for the lost time with a heavy travel itinerary in the coming days, including rallies Thursday in Wisconsin, Nevada and Colorado. Obama’s remarks Thursday will focus on boosting middle-class security, the key message the campaign is expected to push in the final days of the race.”

The New York Daily News: “Talk about an October Surprise. Just six days before the election, the nation saw President Obama joining with a fierce critic, Republican Gov. Chris Christie, to inspect the coastal carnage caused by Hurricane Sandy along the Jersey Shore. With the presidential election drum tight, images of the Democratic President doing the people’s business alongside one of Mitt Romney's superstar supporters presented a picture of bipartisanship Obama's handlers back in Chicago couldn’t have choreographed in their wildest dreams.”

Obama has a new ad out highlighting Colin Powell’s endorsement.

Reuters: “After three days of focusing on superstorm Sandy, President Barack Obama will return to the campaign trail on Thursday with a more ‘affirmative’ message to win over undecided voters in the final days of the race for the White House.” Obama’s closing “argument will touch on points he has made for months about the choice between competing Republican and Democratic visions, Obama advisers said, but it will put more weight on Obama's ideas for the future and could resurrect some of the hopeful themes that helped him win election in 2008.” David Axelrod says Obama’s stump speech will be altered slightly in coming days: "You're going to see him lift up ... the vision of what we're fighting for. We'll still address what the choice is. You have to address the choice. But I think it'll tilt toward the affirmative, toward the future."