Bolstered by surging poll numbers and after standing his ground in last night's final debate, Barack Obama is boldly going where Democratic presidential candidates have not done so well in recent elections.
Two Democrats with knowledge of the strategy say he's launching TV ads in West Virginia, which hadn't been on the list of target states until recently.
Obama lost West Virginia in the Democratic primary to Hillary Rodham Clinton as he struggled to win over working-class whites. But Democrats say the economic turmoil in the hard-hit state and TV ads Obama has been running in neighboring states have made West Virginia competitive.
And they say Obama's campaign also is considering pouring money into reliably Republican Kentucky, and may yet return to the airwaves in North Dakota and Georgia. Those are two states Obama had tried to put in play over the summer. He pulled out when they appeared out of reach.
Despite his rising fortunes, Obama offered a word of caution at a fundraiser this morning in New York. He said, for anyone getting cocky or giddy, "two words for you: New Hampshire." That's where he got smacked by voters right after he won the Iowa caucuses.
John McCain, meanwhile, is being forced to campaign in what had been solidly GOP territory.