Clinton, Obama go down to the wire in Texas, Ohio
Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton on Saturday waged a pitched battle for Texas and Ohio, three days before the two states vote on a possible day of destiny in the Democratic White House race.
The rivals set off on a frenzied weekend hop-scotch between two states blanketed by no-holds-barred television advertising blitzes, as their presidential campaign aides jousted to massage expectations before the votes.
Their get-out-the-vote struggles took on extra significance as new polls showed a virtual tie in the two states, leaving Tuesday's contests as unpredictable as any in the roller-coaster 2008 election.
Clinton, trying everything to keep her campaign alive, after Obama tore to 11 straight nominating contest wins, planned a campaign swing on Saturday through Texas population centres including San Antonio and the Dallas area.
"We need a president again who is a fighter, a doer and a champion," Clinton said, opening her day with a jolt of energy from grass-roots volunteers who will herd Texan Democrats to vote in primaries Tuesday, then get them to show up at evening caucuses, under the state's quirky nominating system.
She was later to fly to economically depressed Ohio, for a cross-state trek on Sunday. Obama was meanwhile dropping into Rhode Island, which along with Vermont also holds a nominating contest on Tuesday, before heading to Parma, a suburb of Cleveland, trying to undermine Clinton among her core blue-collar support.