Can Obama stop the Romney charge?

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney is on a roll after the first Presidential debate. Photo: Reuters

Momentum. It's what Obama had and what Romney took away from him at the first Presidential debate in Colorado.

Now Mitt-mentum is clear for all to see: rising poll numbers, larger crowds and a confidence that is making people look again at the man who would be the first Mormom president.

Look no further than the fact that Barack Obama is spending three long days locked away in a resort near the colonial town of Williamsburg in Virginia, while Romney's been out telling large crowds that the President's not working.

He's hammering away at what he says is the Administration's failure to keep up with China in creating jobs, and their failure to protect America's citizens from terrorist attacks like the one on the US consulate building in Benghazi.

Expect to see Romney bring up the same lines when he goes face to face with the President tomorrow.

Three days failing to get out and campaign in front of large crowds is an eternity at this stage of the game, and shows the importance Team Obama is placing on the next debate.

The candidates find themselves in the opposite position from where they stood as they gripped the lecterns on stage in Denver: Obama now needs to show fight and soul; Romney just needs to keep President at bay.

The President's only appearance on Sunday was at an campaign office near his debate prep hotel in Virginia where he was surprised to find a volunteer from London amongst the enthusiastic crowd.

The Democrats still have an impressive and passionate ground game. Thousands were out knocking on doors and phoning potential voters over the weekend, and Obama needs to follow their lead tomorrow evening if he's to halt the impression that the election is slipping away.

If it's passion that the Democrats want then they need look no further than the superstars on stage at a rally in Ohio on Thursday.

Bill Clinton will be joined by Bruce Springsteen in front of what promises to be a huge crowd in the latest case of celebrities backing the candidate called by his opponents during the 2008 campaign "the biggest celebrity in the world."

Those same celebrities are providing ample funds for Obama's re-election, helping him to saturate the airwaves with his message in key states.

But it's President Obama's personal message in the town hall tomorrow that is now crucial to the outcome of the 6 November poll.

Has he still got the passion, words and policies to overcome a challenge that less than two weeks ago was being written off as a dead campaign walking?

It's Obama's big night, and another poor performance could prove difficult to recover from.