The Boston Globe reports that President Obama will visit Massachusetts this weekend to campaign for Democrat Martha Coakley, who is facing a surprisingly tough challenge from Republican Scott Brown for the late Ted Kennedy's Senate seat.
It is a high-stakes gambit for the president, whose spokesman said as recently as Monday that he had no plans to travel to the Bay State. Obama could face criticism for making a political trip amid intense health care negotiations and the devastation in Haiti. And if Coakley loses, it could damage the president's prestige and embolden Republicans heading into mid-term elections in November.
That he is, reportedly, gearing up for a trip speaks to how nervous Democrats are about losing the seat - and the key 60th vote on health care reform.