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Sparse Attendance on Air Biden

This post was reported and written by CBS News' Arden Farhi:

Aboard Joe Biden's campaign plane Thursday night you would have found a dozen or so staffers, a small army of secret service agents, a few members of the traveling press corps, some makeshift decorations and plenty of empty seats.

On the flight from Warwick, Rhode Island, to Milwaukee Thursday night, six network news producers (myself included) and two camera crews dotted the rows of vacant seats reserved for the media, but not a single print reporter nor TV correspondent could be found. All told, 11 members of the media were on board. If a tree falls in Bidenland . . . you know the rest.

(CBS)

Admittedly, the economic and political news out of Washington may explain the media's neglect of Biden. Less than 40 days until the election Senators McCain and Obama put their campaigns on hold and returned to the nation's capital today to negotiate a financial bailout package with the President and members of Congress. Biden kept on the trail with two events in Pennsylvania and a pair of fundraisers tonight in Rhode Island.

According to campaign estimates, the fundraisers brought in $500,000 for the Obama Victory Fund.

Meantime, Biden spokesman David Wade says Biden is keeping an close eye on the bailout negotiations, and is expected to adjust his campaigning depending on when a vote on the bailout package is scheduled.

"Sen. Biden as been in touch daily with Sen. Dodd and key negotiators on Capitol Hill working on the emergency economic package. Absolutely no votes are expected today, and we're in close touch about the upcoming vote schedule," Wade told CBS News.

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    Steve Chaggaris is CBS News' senior political editor.