Clinton battling to hold Ohio as primary nears

( Reuters ) - With a week to go before Ohio's pivotal nominating contest, Hillary Clinton was fighting to hold onto a dwindling lead as rival Barack Obama worked to undercut her support, particularly among working class voters.

"They are really going at it with a frenzy," said Ohio State University political science professor Paul Beck.

The battles were playing out in a statewide swarm of mailers, television ads and in campaign events that have been drawing tens of thousands of would-be voters from all parts of this Midwestern state known for manufacturing and coal mining.

Clinton has said the results here and in Texas, which also holds its primary March 4, will be critical if she is to become the Democratic candidate who will face presumptive Republican nominee John McCain in the November election.

"If she were to lose one or the other, she would really have a hard time winning the nomination," said Beck.

Clinton and Obama square off Tuesday night in Cleveland for the last debate before the primary, which has 141 delegates at stake in Democratic party contest. Texas offers 228 delegates.

President Bill Clinton carried Ohio in both 1992 and 1996 elections and his wife's promises to create new jobs and provide universal health care garnered strong early support from working-class families hit by job losses. With more than 235,000 jobs gone since 2000, the state's unemployment rate of 6 percent is among the nation's highest.

"We have a lot of layoffs," said Ji Rawat, a 47-year-old sheetmetal worker with three children who showed up to support Clinton at a rally in Columbus. "People feel poor."

But Clinton's favor in the eyes of the working class took a hit last week when the 1.4 million-member International Brotherhood of Teamsters endorsed Obama, who is also pushing a message of job creation and health-care reform. That followed endorsements from the Service Employees International Union and the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, which represent a combined 3.2 million workers.

Obama's campaign coupled the endorsements with an attack positioning Clinton as a supporter of trade policies many workers believe dealt a death blow to their jobs.

Clinton's campaign has said Obama is distorting the facts and accused the Illinois senator of exploiting loopholes in campaign finance laws.

But a 21-point lead at mid-month has dropped to 9 points, with Clinton up 51 percent to 40 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Monday.

The signs of shifting sentiments, combined with a record of losing the last 10 straight state nominating contests in a row to Obama, has Clinton's campaign taking nothing for granted.

"It is going to be literally as much as we can get done in the next week," Clinton campaign spokesman Isaac Baker said of the final push in Ohio. "This is a very competitive race."

The campaign rolled out three television ads statewide this week, and is pushing thousands of volunteers onto the streets for door-to-door canvassing.

Campaigners are also encouraging Clinton supporters to cast ballots ahead of March 4, before they have a chance to be swayed by the 46-year-old Obama, who would be America's first black U.S. president and has been called a "rock star" politician who packs auditoriums with giddy crowds.

Clinton, who would be the first woman U.S. president, has also been playing up an endorsement from Gov. Ted Strickland, as well as the support of black congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones.

Obama spokesman Dan Leistikow acknowledged Clinton's support in Ohio was "a huge challenge, but said Obama was gaining ground. The Illinois senator drew an estimated 11,000 to a rally in Cincinnati on Monday.

"The more voters get to know Senator Obama and hear his message the better he does," said Leistikow.

That was the case for Mark Lambert, a 41-year-old electrician at the General Motors plant in Moraine who has suffered a series of pay cuts and has pinned his hopes for an improved economy on Obama.

"I think he has the best chance of crossing the aisle and working with Republicans to get things done," said Lambert.

Weekly actual topics in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Weekly actual topics in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Weekly tenders in the region (April 16-20)
Weekly tenders in the region (April 16-20)
Last week’s laws, orders and decrees in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Last week’s laws, orders and decrees in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Loading Bars
UK consumer credit slumped as new lockdown hit in January
Azerbaijan's SOCAR Polymer maintains leading positions on export in private sector
Saudia plans to order 70 Airbus, Boeing jets
Number of payment cards in circulation surges in Kazakhstan
Ankara hosts meeting of Joint Azerbaijan-Turkey Commission on Culture (PHOTO)
OECD recommends steps to develop export-oriented agriculture sector of Georgia
S&P names key risks for Georgian economy in 2021
Kazakhstan Railways opens tender to buy pipes
Uzbekneftegaz launches second compressor station at Alan field
Uzbek-Korean JSC announces tender for transport services
Iran plans to increase amount of airplanes flying over its territory
Iranian gov't approves a seven-year plan to save Gorgan Bay
Iran's Atomic Energy Organization talks Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant
Non-cash payments by foreigners in Azerbaijan plummet
Azerbaijan's satellite operator discloses revenues for Jan.2021
Turkish TOBB reveals number of registered Iranian companies in Jan.2021
Volume of problem loans in Azerbaijan decreases
Central Bank of Azerbaijan shares data of deposit operations of Azerbaijani commercial banks
Turkey announces coal handling figures via local ports over January 2021
Kazakhstan sees decrease in overall lending volumes
Third export train with Turkish-made goods sent to China via BTK railway
Area for growing crops increased in Turkmenistan
Iranian Parliament to review Pensions Bill
Georgia expects GDP to recover
Iran seeks to stabilise commodity prices and foreign currency rate
Iran shares data for foreign trade
Iran to adopt domestically produced equipment for National Information Network
Iranian government expresses concerns over FATF related bills
Iran provides free electricity to low consuming users
Azerbaijani president, first lady attend opening ceremony of world`s first tanker museum in Surakhani (PHOTO)
Azerbaijani president, first lady attend sail away of 'Academician Zarifa Aliyeva' ship, launch of first Ro-Pax type 'Azerbaijan' ferry boat (PHOTO)
TP Securities strike deal on setting up polypropylene production in Uzbekistan
President Aliyev inaugurates new administrative building of Azerbaijan Caspian Sea Shipping Company (PHOTO)
Guatemala President thanks India for providing Covishield vaccine doses
14 missions lined up for launch in 2021, says ISRO chairman K Sivan
Foreign countries want to implement India's NEP: Pokhriyal
Android continues to be most used OS in Azerbaijan
Data, AI fastest growing job clusters in world
Demand of commercial banks in Azerbaijan continues to drop
Isro flags off 2021 with 19 satellites, e-Gita & PM Modi's picture
Samsung smartphones retain popularity in Azerbaijani mobile device market
Turkey decreases crude oil imports from Kazakhstan month-on-month
EU, FAO to implement new agro-project in Georgia
Kazakhstan’s Atyrau refinery opens tender to buy spares
Kazakhstan unveils 2020 trade turnover results with Turkey
Azerbaijan SME Dev't Agency expands access of businesses to financial market
Google remains most popular search engine in Azerbaijan
Iran's Qom Seminary stands behind Azerbaijan regarding Karabakh
Iran hopes for 'various projects' on Azerbaijan's liberated lands - Deputy FM
SOCAR’s STAR Refinery increases oil imports
Largest share of Uzbekistan’s foreign debt directed at energy development
Azerbaijani Azerlotereya passes under control of Turkish company - FM
Oil price fall below $55/bbl unlikely this year
Kazakhstan revises maximum recommended rates on deposits
Uzbekistan expanding exports of agricultural products to China
Almost 1 lakh Maldivians jabbed with Indian-made Covishield vaccines
Bulgaria, Serbia plan to start gas interconnection project in May
Iraq to pay off its debts to Iran, Iraqi FM says
Turkmenistan restores bus traffic on number of routes
Iran to receive China's Sinopharm vaccine
Investments made in industrial parks of Iran's East Azerbaijan Province
Azerbaijan continues increasing number of SME houses
Turkey names number of ships received at Bandirma port in Jan. 2021
Agricultural lands in Iran's Qazvin province equipped with modern irrigation systems
Azerbaijani Agency for SMEs talks approval of regulatory acts in 2020
Georgia sees decrease in COVID-19 cases for March 1
BP says all necessary permissions obtained for SWAP 1st exploration well
Seasonal increase in prices for fruit, vegetables - main inflation factor in Uzbekistan
Turkmenistan opens visa-free regime for UN staff
Azerbaijan Ministry of Culture delegation discusses strengthening of cultural ties in Turkey (PHOTO)
Bulgaria still interested in SOCAR’s investing in its household gas supply network
Iran's 'Razi Cov-Pars' COVID-19 vaccine to go into mass production, if successful
Iranian MP points to manage cryptocurrency sector in country
Southern Gas Corridor’s expansion will allow Bulgaria to enhance IGB’s capacity
Azerbaijan sees decline in prices for precious metals
Azerbaijan becomes second largest supplier of gas to Bulgaria – envoy
Weekly review of Azerbaijani oil market
Exports of Iran's agricultural products increase
Chrome continues to be most used browser in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijani FM tweets message on Zero Discrimination Day
Make a worthy gift to corporate partners with Xurcun Luxury Nuts, Sweets & Dried fruits! - PHOTO
Major press conference of Azerbaijani president in spotlight of Spanish media
Russia organizes charter flight from Turkmenistan
Iranian currency rates for March 1
Turkey increases trade turnover with Azerbaijan in Jan.2021
ACG oil transshipment from Ceyhan terminal exceeds 33 million tons YTD
Plant of Iran's Kangan Petro Refining Company to be put into operation
Instagram becomes most-used social network in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan shares footage from Aghdam district's Gulluja village (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Uzbekistan reveals its COVID-19 data for March 1
Uzbekistan actively introducing modern energy-saving technologies
Countries continue to purchase goods via Raw Materials Exchange of Turkmenistan
List of Iran's nuclear facilities to remain secret – Salehi
Turkey issues data on Jan.2021 cargo shipment via local ports from Tunisia
Exports of Iranian mining products revealed
Azerbaijani currency rates for March 1
India to fund NRs 530 million for reconstruction of total 25 health posts in Dhading, Sindhupalchowk
Oil extraction from Iran-Iraq joint Azar field to reach new level
‘Hope other countries follow your example’: WHO chief lauds India, PM Modi
India’s Bharat Biotech confirms deal with Brazil to supply 20 million covid-19 vaccine doses
All news