AP Photo/Charles Dharapak
In a late shift, Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign is spending its final days of the presidential race trying to engineer an upset victory in Pennsylvania. Paul Ryan will host a campaign rally near Harrisburg on Saturday, and Romney will campaign in Bucks County on Sunday, as the campaign — along with the Republican National Committee and pro-Romney Super PACs –spends over $10 million in ad buys across the state.
Although Romney has literally never held a statistically significant lead over President Obama in any poll of the state, the campaign is projecting optimism that it can pull off an upset victory. “Pennsylvania presents a unique opportunity for the Romney campaign,” Romney political director Rich Beeson wrote in a memo earlier this week. He added that Pennsylvania is “a natural next step as we expand the playing field.”
If this sounds familiar, it’s because Republicans say something along these lines every four years. As the Democratic National Committee points out, every Republican in the past 20 years has made a late play for Pennsylvania. Since the Romney campaign finds itself unable to make up ground in Ohio, it has little choice but to search for alternate paths to victory — such as Pennsylvania’s 20 electoral votes.
Here are four Republicans who have tried — and failed — to “expand the map” in the Keystone State: