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CAMPAIGN '08: THE DEMOCRATS

Obama to take family break

He will visit his ill grandmother in Hawaii. Campaign stops in Wisconsin and Iowa are canceled.

October 21, 2008|Mark Z. Barabak | Barabak is a Times staff writer.

WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. — Barack Obama will cancel two stops and leave the presidential campaign trail later this week to fly to Hawaii to visit his ailing grandmother, a spokesman announced Monday night.

The Democratic nominee will cease campaigning Thursday after an appearance in Indianapolis and resume his public events Saturday in a Western state to be determined.

The campaign will keep operating in Obama's absence, with advertising and other activities continuing without interruption, spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

The announcement was made at the end of a day of campaigning in Florida, where Obama plans two more stops today.

Gibbs said Obama's grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, 86, "has become ill, and in the last few weeks, her health has deteriorated to the point where her situation is very serious." He declined to elaborate on her condition.

For The Record
Los Angeles Times Wednesday, October 22, 2008 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 31 words Type of Material: Correction
Obama's grandmother: An article in Tuesday's Section A about Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama leaving the campaign trail to visit his ailing grandmother gave her age as 86. She is 85.

Gibbs said Obama's grandmother "has always been one of the most important people in his life. Along with his mother and his grandfather, she raised him in Hawaii from the time he was born until the moment he left for college."

Obama's change of plans will cancel events in Iowa and Wisconsin, two battleground states that have moved strongly Obama's way in the last few weeks.

Obama's wife, Michelle, will hold events Friday in place of the Illinois senator in Akron and Columbus, Ohio.

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mark.barabak@latimes.com

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