WASHINGTON -- Long-time Republican pollster Ed Goeas is leaving Rep. Michele Bachmann's (R-Minn) presidential campaign, The Huffington Post has learned.
Goeas, who has served as an adviser to Bachmann, will consult with the campaign for two more weeks before ending his involvement, he said in a phone interview.
The Associated Press reported that three other aides, senior policy adviser Andy Parrish and two others, are moving back onto Bachmann's congressional payroll, in a sign that her campaign coffers are under strain. The other staffers to head back to Bachmann's congressional office are spokesman Doug Sachtleben, who was the campaign's deputy press secretary, and scheduler Kim Rubin.
Goeas is the third senior adviser to part ways with Bachmann in the last month. His departure was first reported by Politico on Friday but was not confirmed by the campaign until late Monday.
Former campaign manager Ed Rollins, who is also a veteran political operative, stepped aside in early September. His deputy, David Polyansky, left at the same time.
The Bachmann campaign has tried to minimize the fallout from the departures. They said Rollins remains in a consulting role with the campaign, but he is no longer on the payroll and has been critical of Bachmann in press interviews.
Bachmann spokeswoman Alice Stewart said in an e-mail that Goeas "played a critical role in shaping the team and our message."
"Given the changing caucus and primary schedule, we will not be utilizing full time polling consultants and concentrate heavily on retail politics in Iowa," Stewart said. "Ed will work on several projects with us this month, then we shift focus to Iowa and he will shift to other projects not associated with the campaign."
Goeas and Rollins have known one another for a long time, and the exit of both from the campaign is an indication that they both felt the candidate was no longer receptive to their input.
Ever since Bachmann won a straw poll in Iowa in mid-August, her campaign has been in a downward spiral, and she is struggling to turn it around.