Guest blog from Paul Strand in Phoenix:
Word just hit here at the McCain\Palin party in Phoenix that Obama is projected to win Pennsylvania. And the mood went right from happy and hopeful to sober and subdued. Because McCain was pretty much betting the bank on the Keystone State.
Here was the gamble: even if he won all the states solidly in his corner, those leaning his way, and those too close too call, he'd still be 23 electoral votes shy of the necessary 270. If he ripped Pennsylvania away from the Democrats, it would have put him at 268, needing to turn just one more Obama state his way.
Hillary Clinton so trounced Obama in Pennsylvania, he might be more vulnerable there than in any other blue state. His comment about bitter-clingers to guns and religion in small towns like Pennsylvania's might have been the straw to break the Barack-camel's back.
But truth to tell, if the projections hold and Obama holds on to big Pennsylvania, it's hard for even the most diehard McCainiacs here at the Biltmore Resort in Phoenix to see any route to victory. The music's still blaring here in the ballroom, and the party goes on. But unless there are some shocking surprises ahead tonight, for all intents and purposes, the party's over.