Why hasn’t Clinton come to Wisconsin? Here are some theories

Hillary Clinton

As Wisconsin prepares for presidential candidate visits Tuesday, there are questions about why Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton hasn’t made a stop in the state since the April primary.

Some of it may simply be the polling in the race, as Clinton hasn’t been behind in a single Marquette poll. But if she doesn’t schedule a stop before Election Day, it will be historic.

Numbers compiled by University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist Barry Burden show if Clinton doesn’t come to Wisconsin it will be the first time since 1972 that both nominees for president didn’t campaign in Wisconsin before the general election. Burden said the last time was when Richard Nixon decided not to visit the state during his re-election campaign.

That said, Democratic vice-presidential nominee Tim Kaine will make two stops in Wisconsin on Tuesday, including one in Madison.

Burden said his analysis shows Clinton has spent more than half of her time in swing states like Ohio, Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.

“Clinton, I think, has some reasons not to visit the state,” Burden said. “Her approval ratings are still underwater in the polls in Wisconsin, so better to send in either surrogates who are more popular or surrogates who can fly under the radar and just visit with volunteers.”

That’s not what Donald Trump is doing. He’s held big rallies in the state a number of times and is back for another at UW-Eau Claire Tuesday.

“I think the Trump campaign thinks it has some information to suggest that Wisconsin is really in play,” Burden said.

The state Republican Party believes so, and said Trump is pushing hard in northern and western Wisconsin to get out the vote.

“Especially with the news of the FBI reopening their investigation on Friday, there’s tremendous opportunity for Donald Trump to get to the path to 270 in a number of scenarios and I think Wisconsin is a part of one of those,” Wisconsin GOP Executive Director Mike Duffey said.

The Clinton campaign disagrees, saying their early voters are turning out and they don’t necessarily need huge rallies.

“By them not coming here it’s almost like them saying ‘We’re leaving it up to you, this is your responsibility on the ground and we’re trusting you to get people out to the polls and turn Wisconsin blue,'” Clinton volunteer Chet Agni said.

Kaine will be at Gordon Commons at 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday. Trump will be at UW-Eau Claire at 7 p.m.

The two campaigns haven’t yet announced further major candidate visits to Wisconsin for the remainder of the week.