AMES, United States / Iowa, Oct 27 (AFP) – US President Barack Obama and his rival Mitt Romney hunted for votes in battleground states Saturday after the Republican propelled the economy to the forefront of the campaign by promising to restore the country’s economic engine. Romney will take his message to Florida voters while Obama [...]

Sunday Times 2

Rivals stump in US battleground states

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AMES, United States / Iowa, Oct 27 (AFP) – US President Barack Obama and his rival Mitt Romney hunted for votes in battleground states Saturday after the Republican propelled the economy to the forefront of the campaign by promising to restore the country’s economic engine.

Romney will take his message to Florida voters while Obama plans to defend his record in the northeastern state of New Hampshire.

With just 10 days to go until Americans troop to the polls, the Republican nominee on Friday sought to steal Obama’s 2008 “change” slogan and brand him a hapless leader unable to end the slow-growth malaise that has defined the economy.

“The president’s campaign falls far short of the magnitude of the times. And the presidency of the last four years has fallen far short of the promises of his last campaign,” Romney told a crowd in Ames, Iowa.

Turning the tables on 2008 Obama, the 65-year-old multimillionaire private equity baron billed himself as the hope-and-change candidate and the Democratic incumbent as representing the political “status quo.”

“President Obama promised to bring us together, but at every turn, he has sought to divide and demonize. He promised to cut the deficit in half, but he doubled it,” Romney said.

Obama had also been in the region Thursday, stumping for blue-collar votes and seeking to shore up a firewall against Romney, who has drawn ahead of the incumbent in national polls but still trails in key swing states.

With the election on a razor’s edge, the two teams are readying cross-country travel blitzes over the final 10 days of the campaign.

But Mother Nature is intruding on their plans.†Hurricane Sandy threatens to barrel ashore along the US Mid-Atlantic coast on Monday, bringing torrential rain and heavy flooding, and potentially knocking out power to millions just one week before the election.




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