CAMPAIGN '96: WHY BOB DOLE IS STUCK IN A RUT

WITH 60 DAYS LEFT AND HIS POLLS LAGGING, THE CANDIDATE SHOOTS THE MESSENGER

Until Hurricane Fran beat him to it, Bob Dole had planned to spend last Friday campaigning in New Jersey, trying hard to make a dent in another crucial swing state. The master of clanging symbols, who once toured the Old Man ale plant in New Hampshire, was scheduled to appear at the Switlik Parachute Co. in Trenton, a factory that makes lifeboats, life jackets and parachutes. "Let me get this straight," said a top campaign official after the trip was scrubbed. "We're going to a factory that makes products for people who are drowning or crashing? Thank God for the hurricane."

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