SPOKESMAN: Join me in welcoming the President of the United States, George W. Bush. (cheers and applause )
GWEN IFILL: If you're looking for clues to the races to watch in Tuesday's elections for the house, Senate and state house, just track the travels of the President of the United States. In the month of October alone, George W. Bush has logged thousands of miles, from New Mexico to Maine.
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: I like to say, "when you find a good one, you got to send them back to office. And you found a good one in Susan Collins.
GWEN IFILL: Mr. Bush has been lending his political weight and considerable popularity to the campaigns of dozens of the best- positioned Republican candidates for office, granting them coveted local exposure on the steps of Air Force One.
SPOKESMAN: The President of the United States, George W.! Bush
GWEN IFILL: A Presidential visit brings dollars, too. The Federal Election Commission reported this week that Republicans have out-raised Democrats 2-1 this cycle in money spent directly on candidates; $289 million raised by Republicans, compared to $127 million by Democrats. And with days to go before Tuesday's voting, and with control of the house and the Senate hanging in the balance, the President's October itinerary reads like a political tip sheet to the year's hot races. Mr. Bush has been campaigning for governor in Maryland, with Republican Robert Ehrlich; in Massachusetts, with Mitt Romney; in Tennessee, with Van Hilleary; and in Florida, with his brother Jeb, who faces a tightening race for reelection against Democratic opponent Bill McBride.
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Thank you all.
GWEN IFILL: The President has also been campaigning for Senate seats, hoping to up-end the Democrats' one-seat majority, in Georgia, with Saxby Chambliss; in Missouri, with Jim Talent; in Colorado, with Wayne Allard; and repeatedly in Minnesota, with Norm Coleman. He is scheduled to visit Minnesota again this weekend. The President's visit to North Carolina last week was his fifth on behalf of Senate nominee Elizabeth Dole. His message at these stops is virtually identical. He talks about Iraq, about the recalcitrant Congress, and about how much he needs Republicans sent to Washington who will support him.
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: We've got a lot of work to do in Washington, DC, and that's why I am so... want to be involved in these House races. We've got to make sure the country is a stronger country and a safer country and a better country, and to make sure that people can find a job.
GWEN IFILL: Chris Chocola is running for Congress in Indiana. He believes a visit from the President, and the blanket local coverage it receives, is worth its weight in gold.
CHRIS CHOCOLA: I think that they are going to vote for the person they view is going to support our President because he is very well-respected and popular here; the person that's going to support our men and women in uniform with all the things going on in the Middle East. And those are the two things that are really going to drive voter behavior on Election Day.
GWEN IFILL: And the President is not alone on the campaign trail. Vice President Cheney is a regular presence as well-- here in Kansas with House candidate Adam Taff.
VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: The President and I look forward to welcoming Adam to the nation's capital come January. He will be vital in helping us meet the key priorities for the nation, in terms of winning the war on terror, strengthening the economy and defending our homeland.
GWEN IFILL: And it's not even close to over. The President's weekend schedule includes visits to New Hampshire, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida.