Yet another possible setback for the Democratic party. According to the Saint Louis Beacon, Missouri senator Claire McCaskill, who is in the middle of a tough reelection fight, might skip the Democratic convention in September.

"A campaign aide said the senator’s schedule for September was still in flux," the Beacon reports. "McCaskill expects to be in a tough re-election battle."

McCaskill had missed the state Democratic convention several weeks ago because her mother has been ill. She did make the party's biggest fundraising event of the year, the Jefferson-Jackson dinner, last Friday.

McCaskill also skipped the 2004 Democratic presidential convention in Boston because she was engaged in a spirited contest for governor. McCaskill was in a difficult political position that year because she was challenging a fellow Democrat already holding the office, then-Gov. Bob Holden.

The national convention that year was held in late July, just weeks before Missouri’s 2004 presidential primary, in which McCaskill defeated Holden. She lost that November to the Republican nominee, Matt Blunt.

Skipping the Democratic convention would be a signal to both Missouri voters and the national party that McCaskill wants to distance herself from President Obama.

UPDATE: The liberal website Talking Points Memo confirms that McCaskill will skip the Democratic convention:

Claire McCaskill will not be attending the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, a McCaskill aide confirmed to TPM Tuesday. McCaskill joins a list of vulnerable Democratic politicians whose home districts are hostile ground for President Obama and who will be steering clear of the convention.

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