Obama, Romney to Visit Crucial Battleground State of Ohio

Posted June 14th, 2012 at 7:30 am (UTC-5)
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U.S. President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, the likely Republican presidential nominee, will travel to Ohio Thursday to deliver major speeches about their views on the sluggish U.S. economy.

Mr. Obama will appear at a community college in Cleveland, where he is expected to argue that Romney's plans to extend tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans and repeal new regulations on the financial sector are similar to those of former President George W. Bush that led to the 2008 economic recession.

Romney, who will make a campaign stop in the city of Cincinnati, dismissed the president's upcoming speech during an appearance Wednesday before a group of business leaders in Washington. The former Massachusetts governor said he believed Mr. Obama will “speak eloquently, but “words are cheap.” He accused the president of being hostile to business, and said Mr. Obama could not take credit for any improvement the economy has made since taking office.

Thursday's speeches in the manufacturing-heavy state symbolizes Ohio's importance to both Mr. Obama and Romney in the November general election. No presidential candidate in recent years has won the White House without winning the state.

Mr. Obama is trying to rebound from a recent wave of bad news, including an unexpectedly weak jobs report for May, and last week's comments that the private sector is “doing fine,” which Republicans say underscores how much the president is out of touch with the nation's true economic woes. Recent opinion polls suggest Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney are locked in a virtual tie.