When President Obama visits Scranton Wednesday, he will speak at the same high school gym where Hillary Clinton kicked off her Pennsylvania campaign in March 2008. We forget it now, but even then Scranton folks were skeptical about the guy promising hope and change.

In that primary, Mr. Obama never did connect. On St. Patrick’s Day, he showed up in Scranton wearing no green until someone asked him why and he borrowed a green tie from a staffer. It didn’t help that a few weeks before the vote, he explained his inability to gain traction in Pennsylvania by accusing its small-town citizens of being “bitter” and clinging “to guns or religion.”

Mrs. Clinton, by contrast, played the homecoming queen. In a speech to an overflow crowd, she spoke about the Scranton Lace Company where her grandfather worked; about the Court Street Methodist Church where she had been baptized; about the slice she’d enjoyed that afternoon at Revello’s Pizza-Café.

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