Sarah Palin is on a barnstorming tour of the state of Georgia today, campaigning for fellow Republican Saxby Chambliss. The incumbant senator faces a runoff election tomorrow against challenger Jim Martin, a Democrat. With votes still being recounted in the Minnesota senate contest between Al Franken and Norm Coleman, the outcome of Tuesday's Georgia runoff could determine the size of the Democrats' majority in the senate.
The former GOP vice presidential candidate has strong support in Georgia, says the Savannah Morning News:
Polls taken by Atlanta-based Strategic Vision consistently showed that Palin was more popular in Georgia than the losing GOP presidential candidate, Sen. John McCain. In the same surveys, she also had higher approval ratings than Democratic President-elect Barack Obama or Sen. Joe Biden, his vice presidential running mate.
Palin's popularity among Peach State voters may explain why she was scheduled to campaign for Chambliss on the eve of the runoff election.
In Augusta, the first of her four appearances scheduled today, the Augusta Chronicle reports that Alaska's governor told a crowd at the James Brown Arena that the election is a critical one, and their votes could make a difference in the outcome:
"All of this depends on you tomorrow. Georgia, the stakes are so high. America is depending on you."
The Chronicle story indicates a large turnout for Gov. Palin:
A long line stretched from the doors of the James Brown Arena up Seventh Street and down Telfair as people waited for the civic center doors to open.
Update 1: Here's a report from the Morning News on the Savannah rally. Video here.
Update 2: Reports from macon.com on Gov. Palin's appearance in Perry here and here.
Update 3: Palin wrapped up her whirlwind tour of Georgia for Chambliss with an afternoon rally just outside of Atlanta. Here's a news package as it aired on WSB-TV. The AJC blogged it here.