EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

World/National News

November 4, 2012

At the end, Romney, Obama spar over voter revenge

MENTOR, Ohio (AP) — Reaching for the finish line, Republican Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama embarked yesterday on the final 72-hour haul of their long, grinding quest for victory, swatting at one another over what should motivate Americans to vote, which candidate they can trust and offering dueling pictures of what the next four years should bring.

Romney sprinted through a New Hampshire-to-Iowa-to-Colorado day faulting Obama for telling supporters a day earlier that voting would be their “best revenge.”

“Vote for ‘revenge?’” the GOP candidate asked in New Hampshire, oozing incredulity. “Let me tell you what I’d like to tell you: Vote for love of country. It is time we lead America to a better place.”

The Republican nominee sounded the same message in Iowa and released a TV ad carrying the same message.

Obama, campaigning in the uber-battleground of Ohio, countered with a final reminder that Tuesday’s election is “not just a choice between two candidates or two parties, it’s a choice between two different visions for America.” The president offered himself as the candidate voters can trust, renewing his criticism of Romney for what he said were misleading ads suggesting that automakers were shifting U.S. jobs to China.

“You want to know that your president means what he says and says what he means,” Obama told a 4,000-person crowd in northeast Ohio. “And after four years as president, you know me.”

The president urged voters in an overflow room to shepherd their friends, neighbors and girlfriends to the polls to vote early, tacking on this very practical caveat: “You should convince them to vote for me before you drag them off to the polls.”

Campaign spokesman Jennifer Psaki said the president’s revenge comment was nothing more than a reminder that if voters think Romney’s policies are “a bad deal for the middle class, then you have power, you can go to the voting booth and cast your ballot.”

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