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Obama is faring better in Ohio than in many other swing states, but not enough to eliminate any risk of weighing down other Democrats on the ballot. In a Quinnipiac University poll conducted in November, about the same number of Ohio voters approved of Obama as disapproved.

The decision of whether to appear alongside the president at campaign events had dogged other Democrats defending difficult seats in the Senate this cycle.

Sen. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillOvernight Cybersecurity: DHS cyber nominee vows to make election security 'top priority' | CIA to allow lawmakers to review classified info on Haspel | Dems raise security concerns about Trump's phone use Election security dominates hearing for Trump Homeland Security nominee Overnight Cybersecurity: Homeland Security official says Russia likely targeted more than 21 states | Senate approves Trump's NSA chief | Lawmakers unveil bipartisan internet privacy bill MORE (D-Mo.) raised eyebrows when she did not appear with Obama during an October visit to Missouri, where his poll numbers are under water. But McCaskill had a more watertight excuse: Joining Obama would have meant leaving Washington while the Senate was in session, and possibly missing important votes.