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Kasich will skip S.C. primary for New England campaign stops

By Ann Marie Awad   |   Feb. 18, 2016 at 4:58 PM
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BLUFFTON, S.C., Feb. 18 (UPI) -- Just two days out from South Carolina's Republican primary, Ohio Gov. John Kasich announced he'll be leaving the state before vote totals come in to get a jump on key Super Tuesday states.

On Saturday, the day of South Carolina's primary, Kasich will be holding town halls in Massachusetts and Vermont, which -- along with twelve other states -- hold their primaries on March 1, otherwise known as Super Tuesday. The Boston Globe reported Kasich will then attend a high-dollar fundraiser in Boston.

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"We campaigned in South Carolina on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Tuesday, today, tomorrow and Friday," Kasich spokesman Chris Schrimpf told The Globe. "After South Carolina votes the race moves on to other states including Massachusetts, where we will hit the ground running."

The New York Times reported Kasich also spent time campaigning in Michigan earlier this week, which holds its primary on March 8. Michigan, which shares a border with Kasich's home state of Ohio, is seen as critical by his campaign. "We're like two different sides of the same coin," the candidate told reporters during a stop there Tuesday.

Despite Kasich's second-place finish in the New Hampshire primary, he polls second to last in South Carolina.

Columbia, S.C. newspaper The State endorsed Kasich on Thursday, saying "voters should choose Ohio Gov. John Kasich and his actual record of improving federal and state governments."

However, Kasich has acknowledged that he is a moderate compared with other GOP candidates, which makes him less appealing to South Carolina Republicans, who tend to lean further to the right.

"I'm just not known as much as I would like to be," he told reporters at a campaign stop in Hilton Head, S.C., on Wednesday. "There's only so much time."

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