Thursday, October 2, 2008

McCain Abandons Michigan

Jonathan Martin, writing for today, reports that the McCain-Palin campaign is pulling out of Michigan. Martin says that the Republican presidential ticket will end television advertising, stop all direct mail and relocate its paid staff to more competitive states. A campaign event scheduled for next week in Plymouth MI has also been cancelled.

Once considered competitive by key Republican strategists, Michigan has moved steadily into safer and safer territory for the Obama-Biden team in recent weeks. Polls over the past two weeks have given the Democrats anywhere from a seven to ten point lead. Senator John Kerry won Michigan in 2004 by three points, 51% to 48%, over George W. Bush. Then Vice-President Al Gore bested Bush in Michigan in the 2000 election by five points, 51%-46% (third party candidates got 3% of Michiganders' votes in 2000).

The abandonment of a serious effort in Michigan further complicates an increasingly difficult challenge for the McCain campaign to garner the necessary 270 electoral votes for a victory on Nov. 4th. Now more than ever, both Florida and Ohio have become must-wins for the GOP ticket.

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