Following next week's State of the Union address, President Obama will take his message on the road, as part of a three-day, five-state trip, the White House announced Wednesday. Mr. Obama will visit Iowa, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado and Michigan.
While its customary for presidents to travel around the country in the days after addressing the nation, the five states Obama will visit this month are all swing states, vital to his reelection.
Obama also heads to Florida this Thursday, the ultimate swing state and site of the upcoming, all important Republican primary on Jan. 31. The president will make a tourism announcement at Disney World; just days before his Republican rivals head to the Sunshine State in pursuit of the GOP nomination.
But the president isn't just hitting the next Republican primary state. As part of his post-address trip, Obama will stop in Las Vegas, Nev., on Jan. 25 and 26, where the Republicans will caucus the first weekend of February.
Coincidence? The White House doesn't think so. "Our schedules are made with a lot of different considerations well in advance," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told skeptical reporters Wednesday.
Carney says the president's message for the tour will be "fiercely focused on economic growth and job creation."
Four years ago, then-Senator Obama won the support of voters in Iowa, Nevada, Colorado and Michigan, but Democrats believe Arizona is within grasp for the president this cycle, especially with the growing Hispanic population. In 2008, the Grand Canyon State went to Obama's rival, Arizona Sen. John McCain.