Former President Bill Clintons rally in Raleigh on Sunday will be held at Pullen Park, campaign officials announced Saturday afternoon.
The 4:30 p.m. event will be open to the public. Pullen Park is west of downtown off Western Boulevard.
It was announced Friday that Clinton would appear in Raleigh over the weekend, but the details of where and when had not been nailed down until now.
With several polls showing the presidential race tightening in North Carolina, the visit by the former president is the latest indication that the Obama campaign is stepping up its efforts here.
Jill Biden, wife of the vice president, campaigned in Asheville and Huntersville on Friday, and Michelle Obama was scheduled to stump in Charlotte on Monday. Meanwhile, the Obama campaign has in recent weeks begun increasing its advertising buys in the state, according to the National Journal.
Its pretty clear the state is still up for grabs and the Obama campaign still thinks it can win this state, said Steven Greene, a political science professor at N.C. State University.
These are obviously not the candidates themselves, but pretty close to the next best thing, Greene said. These are high-level surrogates. In the closing days of the campaign the most valuable resource is the candidates time. But after that, where you send Bill Clinton, Jill Biden and Michelle Obama is a really important decision. They energize voters and bring them to the polls. So you dont make these decisions lightly.
Clinton, who won high marks from Democrats for his speech to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte in September, has emerged as one of Obamas leading salesmen in the closing days of the campaign.
When asked which president of the past 50 years North Carolinians would most like to bring back to serve in office, 33 percent named Clinton, according to a High Point University Poll released Friday. That was second only to Ronald Reagan at 35 percent.
The Republicans, meanwhile, countered with Sharon Day, the co-chairman of the Republican National Committee, who is visiting GOP field offices across the state Friday and Saturday. Day is scheduled to visit the Raleigh Victory Office at 2:15 Saturday.
A tied race
Although considered one of the battleground states, North Carolina has been in a lower tier than such states as Ohio, Iowa and Virginia, which have had frequent visits from the presidential and vice presidential candidates.
Even without the candidates, both sides have invested heavily in a ground operation and in a TV advertising campaign.
Jim Messina, the national Obama campaign manager, told the states campaign organization Thursday night that Obama had the momentum in the race.
They (the Romney campaign) kept saying this past summer and in early fall that North Carolina would be put away by early October, Messina said in a teleconference. But the fact is, we are exactly where we thought we would be in a tied race and were going to win it on the ground.
He (Romney) has to win between 54 and 60 percent of the remaining vote in North Carolina to win the state.
With early voting ending on Saturday, the Obama campaign has planned 1,200 grass-roots get-out-the-vote events, including a march to the polls at Shaw University Saturday morning.
The Romney campaign put a different spin on the early vote numbers. They note that while North Carolina Democrats are leading the early vote effort, that gap is smaller than in 2008. In 2008, Democrats won the early vote by a 51-30 percent margin. Democrats now have a 48 percent lead to Republicans 32 percent.
Rachel Adams, state Republican campaign spokeswoman, suggested that the move by Democrats to bring in surrogates was to counter the Republican ground game.
Its ironic that Democrats tout the fact that they never left North Carolina but chose to wait until four days out from the election to step up their efforts, she said. Our ground game has been at full force for months, and it will earn Mitt Romney a victory on Tuesday.
The Obama campaign has been increasing its TV advertising buy in recent weeks in North Carolina, according to the National Journal. It has gone from $829,535 for the week ending Oct. 15 to $1.4 million for the week ending Nov. 5.
The Romney campaign has scaled back; spending $1.4 million for the week of Oct 15 to $679,178 for the week ending Nov 5. That does not include the money spent by various super PACs on behalf of Romney, such as the $1.6 million that Restore our Future spent the week ending Oct 29 or the $932,405 that American Crossroads is spending on his behalf for the week ending Nov. 5.