EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

October 3, 2012

Polls give Obama lead over Romney

By John Toolejtoole@eagletribune.com,
The Eagle-Tribune

---- — A series of polls show President Obama widening his lead over Mitt Romney in the swing state of New Hampshire as they prepare for tonight’s debate.

Obama’s lead in the polls ranges from five to 15 points.

The Obama campaign isn’t claiming victory. The Romney campaign isn’t giving up.

“Our message is still resonating with voters,” Romney campaign spokesman Tommy Schultz said.

The polls are just a snapshot in time and will be up and down every day, Schultz said.

“We’re going to keep working it,” he said.

The Obama campaign is competing for each and every vote, spokesman Harrell Kirstein said.

“From Pelham to Pittsburg and Hanover to Hampton, supporters are going door to door because they know how much is at stake,” Kirstein said.

A University of New Hampshire poll released Monday gave Obama his biggest lead, 52 to 37 percent. A poll by New Hampshire-based American Research Group had the narrowest margin, with Obama up 50 to 45.

Public Policy Polling gave Obama a 51 to 43.5 lead. An NBC-Wall Street Journal poll by Marist College had Obama up 51 to 44.

Both campaigns see the state still up for grabs and are regularly deploying their big guns.

Romney’s running mate on the GOP ticket, Paul Ryan, campaigned Saturday in Derry. Former President Bill Clinton will be at the University of New Hampshire for Obama today.

No kin is spared from labor on the trail.

Romney’s son Tagg campaigned in Londonderry yesterday. Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Beau, is due in Derry tomorrow.

New Hampshire political activists are charged up for the debate, airing from 9 to 10:30 tonight on national television. The debate at the University of Denver will focus on domestic policy.

Derry Republican Committee Chairman Jim Foley knows what he wants to see in Romney tonight.

“Exactly the way he has been since he started his run for president: Confident, forward looking, a good, decent man who has a real vision for our country,” Foley said.

Foley sees as key for Romney overcoming what he perceives as growing media partisanship.

“He has to have this clear articulation that can’t be filtered,” Foley said.

The economy is still a winning issue for Romney, Foley said.

“Very much so,” Foley said.

Karen Hutchinson, former chairman of the Londonderry Republicans, said Romney must counter what she calls successful Democratic advertising that depicts him as not caring about the middle class and supporting tax breaks for millionaires.

“People are believing that,” Hutchinson said.

“I’m hoping he does a good job reaching normal Americans and that doesn’t mean corporations and Wall Street,” Hutchinson said.

Romney has tried to tell people they won’t have to work three jobs under his administration because they will be able to have one decent one instead through his pro-business policies, she said.

“I know what he’s trying to say,” Hutchinson said. “But the way he is saying it is not giving comfort to people who are facing hard times.”

Derry Democratic Committee Chairman Betsy Burtis said she would like to see Obama do as well tonight as he has the past three years in office.

“I would like to see him articulate the many ways he has gone above and beyond to help the middle class and to secure our country’s safety and security in this changing world,” Burtis said.

Windham Democratic Committee Chairman Kristi St. Laurent wants to see a little Bill Clinton in Obama, making the case, as Clinton did at the Democratic National Convention, that Democrats have a better vision for the nation with policies that are a good use of tax dollars.

“I think the president has a better economic plan, better and healthier for our country,” St. Laurent said.