Look at the state and see what the terms of the presidential campaign are right now. Like the term “bitter“, for instance.

As warmup acts for Hillary Clinton go, Pennsylvania
State Rep. Peter Daley is just the ticket…Daley, born and raised in the
Mon Valley, is still a bit angry about Barack Obama’s “bitter” comments
— “absolutely appalling,” he tells me after he leaves the stage.  But
Daley doesn’t deny that there are people in the economically-challenged
Mon Valley who are bitter.  He just doesn’t think Obama gets what it’s
all about.

That line about clinging to guns and religion lingers.

This is Clinton country.  A new poll from Suffolk
University, out today, shows Clinton leading Barack Obama statewide, 52
percent to 42 percent. But in the southwestern part of the state, here
in the Mon Valley, Clinton has a huge lead, 74 percent to 17 percent.

And people here aren’t just for Clinton. They’re against Obama.  At
this Hillary rally, no one expresses any outright hostility to Obama,
but they tell me over and over again that they just don’t like him,
that they don’t care for him, that they don’t trust him. They view him
as inexperienced and not ready to be president, and they think he’s
selling them a bill of goods.

“I could tell you I’m going build you a house, and I’m going to do
everything you want,” a man named Bernie tells me.  “I’m going to put
everything in it just the way you want it.  And then you give me your
money, and you find out I’m not a carpenter.

That’s going for the essence, voters scrutinizing what’s beyond the surface. Because the rest is window dressing.

York points out in the piece that when they talk,

the contrast between Clinton and Obama, between her plodding specificity and his soaring inspiration, could not be greater.

But a lot of voters have heard enough of the rhetoric, as Mark Steyn notes.

In my book America Alone, I note a global
survey on optimism: 61 per cent of Americans were optimistic about the
future, 29 per cent of the French, 15 per cent of Germans. Take it from
a foreigner: In my experience, Americans are the least “bitter” people
in the developed world.

Just look at Pennsylvania.

Sheila Liaugminas

Sheila Liaugminas is an Emmy award-winning Chicago-based journalist in print and broadcast media. Her writing and broadcasting covers matters of faith, culture, politics and the media....