Breaking: Scozzafava drops out of NY-23 race (UPDATE: ESTABLISHMENT RALLIES AROUND HOFFMAN?)

Huge news (via Memeorandum):

Republican Dede Scozzafava has suspended her bid in next Tuesday’s NY 23 special election, a huge development that dramatically shakes up the race. She did not endorse either of her two opponents — Conservative party candidate Doug Hoffman or Democrat Bill Owens.

Scozzafava has “probably made her last campaign appearance between now and Election Day,” spokesman Matt Burns told POLITICO. “She’s releasing her support to the two other candidates.”

“I had a discussion with her last night, and we made the decision after I spoke with her. We talked about it, what this came down to was spending. It came down to the ability to defend herself from the get-go. And that’s the reality. She was unable to define herself where the people didn’t know her.”

You can read her statement at that same link.

She must have finally seen the writing on the wall with both her falling poll numbers and the groundswell of support for Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman. Those same numbers indicate what may be a tight election on Tuesdsay between him and the Democrat in the race, Bill Owens, who will be joined by VP Joe Biden on Monday in a last ditch effort to drum up more support. Considering Biden’s high unfavorability ratings, it remains to be seen what – if any – positive impact will come from his visit. As for any ‘official’ support for Hoffman from the GOP establishment, well, they’re not supporting him – never have. In fact, they’ve pulled out of the NY-23 race altogether.

R.S. McCain has much more on this developing story.

Are you a conservative who lives in NY-23 and wants to show your support for Hoffman? Obviously, the best way to do that at this stage in the game is to vote for him on Tuesday. Not to sound cliche, but every vote counts (unless ACORN or Al Gore’s lawyers are involved, of course) – especially in close races.

(Video link)

Update – 12:01 PM: CNN reports that House GOP campaign Chair Pete Sessions is now set to endorse Hoffman. Politico’s Jonathan Martin reported via Twitter that Newt Gingrich, a staunch defender of Scozzafava against conservatives who accurately described her as a liberal in sheep’s clothing, is now endorsing Hoffman and urging others to vote for him on Tuesday.

Talk about opportunistic!