Mitt Romney is desperate to avoid losing his "home state" of Michigan as much as Newt Gingrich doesn't want to lose Georgia. In fact, it is conceivable all four GOP candidates could lose their home state (Rick Santorum, Pennsylvania; Ron Paul, Texas).
Losing one's home state in a primary or general election is not as rare as it seems. It has happened more than 25 times in a general election and many more times in a primary. But not all home losses are the same. Here are the 10 worst cases where a candidate couldn't win his home state.
* Stephen Douglas, 1860 general election, Illinois: This would have been more devastating had Douglas not been surprisingly blown out in 1860. And he lost it to a man from Illinois: Abraham Lincoln.
* William Jennings Bryan, 1900 general election, Nebraska: In his three presidential bids, Bryan only lost his home state once. But Nebraska was one of those agrarian states that just screamed Democratic Populist. Dropping this to President William McKinley sealed Bryan's fate.
* Dennis Kucinich, 2004 Democratic Party primary, Ohio: OK, so Kucinich wasn't expected to do very much. But he received only 3 percent while losing to John Kerry and John Edwards.
* Thomas Dewey, 1944 general election, New York: Dewey lost to President Franklin Roosevelt, who had some New York connections but was also nearing the end in that election.
* Steve Forbes, 1996 Republican Party primary, New Jersey: With his money and name recognition, and family history, Forbes proved he was unelectable as a Republican.
* Adlai Stevenson, 1952 and 1956 general elections, Illinois: Stevenson lost his home state twice to Dwight Eisenhower.
* Jerry Brown, 1992 Democratic Party primary, California: Brown was running an insurgency campaign and Bill Clinton was running out of gas. But the native son couldn't close the deal or even make it close.
* Jesse Jackson, 1984 and 1988 Democratic Party primaries, Illinois: He lost to a fellow Illinois candidate, Paul Simon. He also lost the same state in 1984 to Walter Mondale.
* George H.W. Bush, 1980 Republican Party primary, Texas: Winning his adopted home state was a must in 1980. Taking this gave the nomination to Ronald Reagan, who saved a spot on the ticket for Bush.
* Al Gore, 2000 general election, Tennessee: As controversial as the Bush vs. Gore case was, it would have never happened without the vice president winning his home state.