Republican Mitt Romney is returning today to the New Hampshire farm where he kicked off his campaign a year ago, aiming to stoke what a senior aide said was the “evolution” among voters that President Obama is not the leader he promised to be four years ago.
“I don’t want to say it’s a turning point,” senior strategist Russ Schiefer told a gaggle of reporters gathered at Romney’s campaign headquarters in the North End. “I think it’s a continuing of an evolution. It’s a continuing of 3 1/2 years of disappointment, 3 1/2 years of people who are voters who have been promised a lot by this president, and that this president has failed to live up to his promises.”
Schiefer added: “The race isn’t going to be decided by any one particular phrase that anyone says; it’s going to be decided by how Americans feel who can best lead. And, I think, they’re looking at President Obama right now and finding him lacking.”
The Obama campaign said the visit underscored the dearth of new thinking Romney has outlined during the past year.
“Mitt Romney returns to New Hampshire today without having proposed a single new idea to grow the economy and strengthen the middle class since launching his campaign there a year ago. In fact, not one point of his 59-point economic plan would create jobs now, and independent economists have said his plan would actually make the economy worse,” said Obama spokeswoman Lis Smith.
The Romney campaign’s media briefing came hours before Romney kicked off a five-day, 1,500-mile bus tour through six general election battleground states.
The tour starts this morning in Stratham, N.H., at a farm owned by former House speaker Doug Scamman - the same venue where Romney formally announced his candidacy a year ago.
The motorcade then heads for Pennsylvania on Saturday, before visiting Ohio on Sunday. House Speaker John Boehner was slated to make his first campaign appearance with Romney.
On Monday, Romney was visiting Wisconsin and Iowa, before concluding the tour on Tuesday in Michigan, his birthstate.
Romney will be joined at several stops by potential running mates, including New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte and Ohio Senator Rob Portman.
Democrats plan rebuttal appearances at each of Romney’s stops.