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Obama's Labor Day: Politics, presence in the Gulf

President Obama heads to his car after arriving at Toledo Express Airport in Swanton, Ohio, Sunday, Sept. 2, 2012.
President Obama heads to his car after arriving at Toledo Express Airport in Swanton, Ohio, Sunday, Sept. 2, 2012.
Madalyn Ruggiero, Associated Press

TOLEDO, Ohio — Barreling through the presidential campaign's competitive states, President Barack Obama detours deep in the South on Labor Day, long enough to offer a presence and promises of help to those flooded out by Hurricane Isaac.

Obama will mix politics and presidential empathy on a holiday traditionally known as an election-year turning point, with summer closing and more voters paying attention to the race for the White House.

Obama shortened his campaign schedule after Isaac pounded the Gulf Coast, but he will still rally the labor vote in Ohio on Monday.

In Louisiana, Obama will visit one of the areas hardest by the hurricane, St. John the Baptist Parish, about 30 miles west of New Orleans. Obama will view the storm damage and assess recovery efforts before addressing reporters.