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Debate Preview: Huntsman Will Not Attend

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(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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GREENLAND, N.H./Las Vegas, NV  (AP/KXNT) — Jon Huntsman is betting big on New Hampshire and abandoning Nevada as his presidential campaign struggles to survive.

Two weeks have passed since the former Utah governor moved his national headquarters to New Hampshire. Despite what some aides say, it was a move of necessity, not preference.

The campaign is shedding staff by the dozen. Poor fundraising numbers become public this weekend. And Huntsman, the Obama administration’s former ambassador to China, is barely registering on national polls.

Lacking the money to run television ads, he’s relying upon shoe leather.

Huntsman hosted seven New Hampshire town halls last week. That’s more New Hampshire town halls in one week than most of his rivals hosted all year. And he plans to boycott Tuesday’s debate in Las Vegas in favor of staging another New Hampshire gathering.

Last week, Huntsman announced he would not campaign in Nevada because the state has refused to move it’s January 14th caucus, which interferes with the schedule of New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation primary.  Following Huntsman’s announcement, fellow GOP White House hopefuls Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich also said they would join the Nevada boycott, but both still plan to participate in Tuesday’s debate.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press/KXNT.

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