Michigan takes its turn today as a presidential primary battleground after a week of sharpening arguments by Republican contenders over how to revive a state laid low by disappearing auto factories and jobs.
The Republican primary is the only contest of consequence here because of an earlier pull-out by Democratic contenders.
The two candidates with the most at stake in Michigan's primary, Arizona Sen. John McCain and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, have battled each other all week over how to cure Michigan's ills and, in the process, shed some light about how they might tackle a looming national recession.
While McCain has taken a bluntly realistic economic tack, warning that some jobs "are not coming back" and stressing job retraining and new business opportunities, Romney has hewed to a sunnier insistence that old industries can be restored.
Polls showed McCain and Romney in a close race, with former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee running third.
Of the three, Romney is most in need of a victory as he looks to restore at least some of the luster lost with defeats in the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary. Several associates have suggested the former Massachusetts governor may quit the race unless he prevails.