Obama campaign volunteers ride to Wis., a key battleground state - FOX 32 News Chicago

Obama campaign volunteers ride to Wisconsin, a key battleground state

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

There is little doubt that Chicago is the president's town. But the picture is not so clear in Wisconsin. FOX Chicago took a ride to the battleground state with Obama campaign volunteers.

In these last crucial days before the election, a special group of campaigners is hitting the road for Team Obama. Friends who are like relatives, with personal connections to The First Family, forged relationships with the Obamas in Chicago.

FOX Chicago News went along on their last road trip from Hyde Park, to the political battleground. Like tailgaters before the big game, sporting their team colors and partisan gear, the cars started lining up early Saturday morning around the corner from the president's former full-time home - a home these people have all been inside.

"My wife and I, we've been friends for over 20-25 years," Charles Lampley said.

"They are good friends," Sandy Matthews said. "But I'm' also committed to this president and to his re-election."

With Illinois likely an easy win for Democrats, they're headed north to the battleground state of Wisconsin - armed with their secret weapon, the personal connection.

"I did have a chance to speak with the first lady recently," Matthews said, "and she is energized, she is excited, feeling like this is a definite win."

The dozen or so cars making up the friends and family road trip, caravans along I-94 into Paul Ryan territory.

Racine, Wisconsin is in the congressional district of Mitt Romney's running mate, so he's well known there. These friends of his opponent will play up what they know about the president.

"We know him, we know his heart, we know his character, we want to make sure that we emphasize that," Adrienne Pitts said. "That's why we're coming up strong."

At the Racine Labor Center, the Hyde Park group joined other volunteers, getting a briefing on local election rules. Working from a detailed list of names and addresses, the door to door strategy is old school, but maybe still the best way to make a voter feel important.

"In the last election, there was a one person per ward vote that made the difference," Iris Sewell said. "So it is laborious and it is tedious, but we have to believe its one vote at a time."

It takes a lot of nerve to knock on the doors of complete strangers who may not like out-of-towners messing in their politics. But these campaigners are determined to not only exercise their right to vote, but their right to persuade other voters.

But the big push is to get their supporters to be voters - for sure - on Tuesday, Nov. 6, to spread enthusiasm and sometimes, just to listen.

On Saturday, there was an unexpected bonus.

The volunteers got to visit with President Obama himself, and snap a photo while the man they're all working to hard to re-elect was on a campaign run in Milwaukee. While at the Milwaukee Delta center with superstars Bruce Springsteen and Katy Perry, the president made time for them backstage.

These folks will be at his house, no matter what happens on Tuesday.

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