McMullin scraps Virginia event to focus on Western states
© ABC News

Independent presidential candidate Evan McMullin is canceling an event in Virginia to redouble his efforts in Western states, according to a new report.


“The campaign has reached a decision to cancel the University of Richmond event as Evan McMullin surges in the Mountain West states,” spokesman Eli Williams said Monday, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

The “Community Conversation With Evan McMullin,” a town hall, had been scheduled for noon on Thursday at the University of Richmond's Moot Courtroom.

McMullin is one of five presidential candidates on Virginia’s ballot ahead of Election Day. But recent polls have shown Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonMedia circles wagons for conspiracy theorist Neera Tanden The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Senate ref axes minimum wage, House votes today on relief bill Democratic strategists start women-run media consulting firm MORE ahead in the state.

A poll from Christopher Newport University’s Judy Ford Wason Center for Public Policy last week found Clinton leading Republican nominee Donald TrumpDonald TrumpBiden to hold virtual bilateral meeting with Mexican president More than 300 charged in connection to Capitol riot Trump Jr.: There are 'plenty' of GOP incumbents who should be challenged MORE by 12 points, 45 percent to 33 percent. Libertarian presidential nominee Gary JohnsonGary Earl JohnsonOn The Trail: Making sense of Super Poll Sunday Polarized campaign leaves little room for third-party hopefuls The Memo: Trump retains narrow path to victory MORE nabbed 8 percent, followed by McMullin’s 3 percent, with Green Party nominee Jill Stein at 1 percent.

Several recent polls found McMullin, a Mormon, making much more headway with Utah voters.

An Oct. 17 poll from the right-leaning Rasmussen Reports found Trump leading Utah by 1 point over McMullin and 2 points over Clinton.

An Oct. 19 Emerson College Polling Society survey found McMullin with a 4-point lead in the Beehive State.

McMullin launched his long-shot White House run in August as a conservative alternative to Clinton and Trump.

The former CIA operative would become the first non-Democratic or Republican presidential candidate to win a state since 1968 if he takes Utah.

Clinton leads Trump by about 5 points nationwide in the latest RealClearPolitics average of polls.