Romney slams Obama on economy after 5 primary wins
Reported by: AP/UNBconnect
Reported on: Apr 26, 2012 09:38 am
Reported in: International
WASHINGTON, Apr 26 (AP/UNB) - Mitt Romney swept five state primaries - further cementing his hold on the Republican presidential nomination - and immediately told voters he would save them from four more years of what he called President Barack Obama's "false promises and weak leadership."
The former Massachusetts governor emerged Tuesday from months of a brutal Republican nominating campaign, reaffirming his determination to hammer Obama over his handling of the U.S. economic recovery from the steepest downturn since the 1930s Great Depression.
"As I look around at the millions of Americans without work, the graduates who can't get a job, the soldiers who return home to an unemployment line, it breaks my heart," Romney said in a victory
speech from New Hampshire, where he scored his first primary victory early this year. "This does not have to be. It is the result of failed leadership and of a faulty vision."
Romney, having shed his closest Republican rival when Rick Santorum left the race this month, is focused on the still-weak economy, the foremost issue among voters and one that polls show
Americans believe Romney is better equipped to handle.
Nevertheless, polling shows Obama with a far higher favorability rating and leads in the dozen states expected to be decisive battlegrounds in the campaign for the White House. Election day is Nov. 6.
Romney won primary victories Tuesday in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Delaware, Pennsylvania and New York in the first contests since Santorum, a former Pennsylvania senator, suspended his
"After 43 primaries and caucuses, many long days and not a few long nights, I can say with confidence - and gratitude - that you have given me a great honor and solemn responsibility," Romney said.
He must now convince independent voters he is the best man to take over the White House. Obama won the presidency in 2008 in the midst of the worst economic downturn to hit the United States in
seven decades. Since then, economic growth has rebounded slowly and joblessness has receded gradually while housing prices have continued to drop in many areas of the country.
Romney planned to intensify fundraising efforts Wednesday and Thursday to prepare for what may be the most expensive presidential contest in the history of U.S. politics. He has at least six
fundraising events in two days in New York and New Jersey.
Romney's campaign had only about $10 million in the bank at the end of March, according to federal filings. Obama reported more than $104 million in his account, having already spent nearly $90 million on the general election.
Obama is in Iowa on Wednesday after campaigning a day earlier on college campuses in two other battleground states - North Carolina and Colorado.
"Our businesses have added more than 4 million jobs over the past two years, but we all know there's still too many Americans out there looking for work or trying to find a job that pays enough to cover the bills and make the mortgage," the president said.
He is focusing on young voters, an integral part of his political base along with women and Hispanics.
Obama, unchallenged for the Democratic nomination, has a head start in organizing, fundraising and other elements of the general election campaign.
Already, he and aides are working to depict Romney and
Republicans as pursuing new tax breaks for the wealthy while seeking
to cut programs that benefit millions of victims of the recession as
well as other lower-income Americans.
Romney picked up at least 146 delegates Tuesday to the party's nominating convention in August.
That left him with 844 delegates of the 1,144 needed for the nomination, compared with 260 for Santorum, 137 for former House of Representatives speaker Newt Gingrich and 79 for Texas Rep. Ron Paul. Romney could collect the needed delegates by the end of May.