According to Jonathan Martin via Politico, John McCain is pulling down TV ads, mailers and even cancelled an appearance in Michigan next week.
John McCain is pulling out of Michigan, according to two Republicans, a stunning move a month away from Election Day that indicates the difficulty Republicans are having in finding blue states to put in play.
McCain will go off TV in Michigan, stop dropping mail there and send most of his staff to more competitive states, including Wisconsin, Ohio and Florida. Wisconsin went for Kerry in 2004, Ohio and Florida for Bush.
McCain’s campaign didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Republicans had been bullish on Michigan, hopeful that McCain’s past success in the state in the 2000 primary combined with voter dissatisfaction with Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm and skepticism among blue-collar voters about Barack Obama could make it competitive.
McCain and his running mate Sarah Palin spent the night after the GOP convention at a large rally in Macomb County, just outside Detroit. The two returned later last month for another sizable event in Grand Rapids.
But recent polls there have shown Obama extending what had been a small lead, with the economic crisis damaging an already sagging GOP brand in a state whose economy is in tatters.
A McCain event planned for next week in Plymouth, Michiigan, has been canceled.
If this is the case McCain’s path to victory has narrowed considerably. He will only challenge 2004 Kerry states Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and New Hampshire. He currently is behind in all three via www.fivethirtyeight.com.