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THE WEEK

Ugly battles on every front in GOP gubernatorial race

TV isn't the only place where the contest between Meg Whitman and Steve Poizner is nasty. From Whitman, there are misleading mailers. And both candidates use the telephones for 'robocalls.'

May 23, 2010|By Cathleen Decker, Los Angeles Times

"We have a vast organization that spans all 58 counties — local community leaders and business leaders, a variety that span the state," said spokeswoman Sarah Pompei.

Although it is beefing up its operation, Poizner's campaign doesn't yet have the presence of Whitman's. The campaign is making phone calls, but so far has sent no mailers to counter her flurry of appeals. As much as anything else, Poizner is counting on momentum, on a surge through election day that propels him beyond the second-place position he has held throughout the primary season.

Poizner's campaign estimates that 40% of voters could cast ballots before election day. Whitman's campaign thinks more than half could vote by mail. If history is any guide, that will be the range — meaning that every day, victory or defeat could be on the line.

"They're still learning about Steve and Meg Whitman and still learning about the Senate [candidates] as well," said Poizner spokesman Jarrod Agen. "We do feel there's a big push to the very end.

"We are very much in striking distance in these final three weeks. The message is cutting through the money machine she has," he said.

cathleen.decker@latimes.com

Each Sunday, The Week examines implications of major stories. It is archived at latimes.com/theweek.

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