Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry is making a major campaign push that will take him to several key states during the next several days.
Trailing in the polls with less than two months to go until Election Day, Senator Kerry began an aggressive campaign swing that will take him to several so-called battleground states during the next week.
Mr. Kerry began his latest effort in the key state of Pennsylvania, which Al Gore narrowly won four years ago. Pennsylvania is also a prime target for the Bush campaign.
Senator Kerry made his appeal for change at a neighborhood rally in a suburb of Pittsburgh.
"If you want to put America back to work and jobs that pay more money than the ones we lost, if you want our kids to be able to afford to go to college, and if you want to restore fiscal responsibility, John Edwards and I invite you to vote for a new direction, move America in a different way," he said. "Let us go make it happen."
Among those who turned out in support was Kathy Borland of Pittsburgh. She is concerned about the economy, health care and Iraq.
"I am tired of lies. I want to hear the truth," she said. "Four years of lies. I do not want to be in a war like this. Wrong war."
Throughout the rally, Bush supporters heckled Senator Kerry from a distance. Mary Koupiaris says she came out to the Kerry rally even though she has already decided to vote for President Bush.
"I think on the issue of the war he has done a good job," she said. "I think he knows what he is doing and he has got our best interests at heart all the time. And I do not know that Kerry is as capable."
If Mr. Kerry is to close to the gap in the polls with President Bush, he will have to win over undecided voters like Sandy McPeak. She says she will listen to both candidates discuss a range of issues.
"You know, the economy, education, you know, the war, everything," she said. "So that is why I am taking my time to make sure."
The New York Times reported that former President Bill Clinton has advised Senator Kerry to focus less on national security issues and more on his domestic policy differences with President Bush as one way of reinvigorating his campaign.