Wadsworth, Ohio (CNN) – House Speaker John Boehner on Sunday said he was "very confident" that Mitt Romney will win his home state of Ohio on Tuesday, but acknowledged that the auto bailout has helped the president with some voters here.
"Romney is doing well in Ohio. You know, polls don't decide elections, voters do," the speaker said, though he later added "the auto bailout may help the president in Ohio a little."
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"But when you look at polling, it wouldn't indicate that that's had much of a factor at all," he continued. "Enthusiasm is on our side."
Boehner made his comments while sitting in a sports bar in Wadsworth, as customers watched the Cincinnati Bengals (Boehner's favorite team) battle the Denver Broncos. The Cleveland Browns also played Sunday, losing to the Baltimore Ravens.
Donning a red Romney campaign pullover, Boehner said it's possible for the GOP nominee to win the election without carrying the Buckeye State, but said "it gets complicated."
"The easiest path for victory for Mitt Romney is to win here in Ohio. And you know when you start to see Romney's campaign being competitive in places like Pennsylvania and Michigan and Wisconsin, it tells me - it reinforces I'll say, reinforces with me that he's doing well here," he said.
Boehner took a lunch break after a morning stop on his three-day bus tour and talked to CNN exclusively. After spending Saturday rallying supporters in Republican strongholds on the western edge of the state, he traveled to an area outside Cleveland, where he held a rally with GOP freshman Congressman Jim Renacci. Renacci is in a neck-and-neck battle in a newly drawn congressional district with Democratic Rep. Betty Sutton, and the race has drawn the most outside money of any House seat in the country.
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Hoping to win over some undecided voters in a more left-leaning part of the state, Boehner was heading to Niles, a city in the northeastern part of the state and home to many working class voters. While Boehner was campaigning here, Romney held a rally up the highway in Cleveland.
President Barack Obama, meanwhile, holds a rally in Cincinnati Sunday and Vice President Joe Biden makes three stops in the state.
Despite public polls showing Obama with a slight edge in this mother of all battleground states, Boehner insisted Romney has the momentum here. He also thinks that he is within striking distance in Pennsylvania, which up until recently Democrats said was solidly blue.
"I've been around Ohio, I've done this trip around Ohio for a lot of presidential races in the past, and I think Ohioans vote with their wallets. That's why I think Romney's going to win on Tuesday," he said.
Boehner said it's always a closely contested race in Ohio, but added he had never seen anything on the level of the intensity both sides are putting into the state in 2012.
Before returning to his home state for the weekend get-out-the-vote effort for the GOP presidential ticket, Boehner traveled across the country for House GOP candidates. He dismissed projections from congressional analysts that the GOP could lose some seats on election night, saying he was confident there would be at least as many Republicans in the House as there are now.
Pressed on whether his party could build on the record gains they made in the 2010 midterm, Boehner told CNN it "might."
"Listen it's too early to tell, we've got a lot of races and a margin of error, it's just going to be a matter of what the turnout looks like and how these races close," he said. "But I feel good about where our team is."
Boehner is about to have something new to cry about.
He is a poor house speaker in US history.
From Republication party member
Well what do you expect him to say? He can't exactly say "Listen folks, I know we have an offensive platform, and unqualified candidate and an ineffective economic policy, but you should vote for us anyway."
When you say "Polls don't decide elections, voters do," you're really saying "The guy ahead in the polls is probably going to win."
Maybe we SHOULD elect another Republican President, and have him promptly rip us a new one just like before.
Honestly, what do you think he would say?
boehner dont know what he talkin about,
This is his big prediction?! He and "The Donald" are really losing it. Was he crying when he said it?
It shouldn't be this close. Even if Obama wins I will be ashamed of the voters in the country. It don't matter how you cut it Romney is for the rich. His first debate flip is an honest, realistic indication of his lack of integrity.
The Talking Mitt is a one-trick pony. It's amazing how so many voters are so gullible to suddenly lean in his direction after yet another flip in his position in the debates. They risk it all on the one trick.
Boehner, get your head out of the clouds. It's over for Romney. I actually think Boehner's quote regarding Tuesday Night. "It will be a long hard night".
white house is getting the enema of the lifetime come january
What a BIg Boehner!
ohio is for obama....not romney
As House speaker he's a loser, and now he's doubling down. Mitt Twitt, Lyin Ryan, and John Bonehead: Can anybody think of a more dysfunctional group???
Why because you know the GOP has rigged it?
Keep dreaming Riri....EVERYTHING point to a Romney win. And a big win!
What else would you expect Boehner to say? In any case, I think he's right – Ohio will go red.
and boehner predicts he will do NOTHING per usual....
well ok he will introduce more IN GOD WE TRUST BILLS and more women anti health bills
I think Boehner had too many drinks to be making predictions. I live in Ohio and Mitt is losing at this time.
Your logic is questionable. Get real or wait till Tuesday.
Mitt's finished. Obama has a huge lead in early voting. Mitt would actually need a big lead in current polls just to catch up in Ohio and elsewhere.
He's finished.48 hours to VICTORY!!!
Of course Mr. Boehner is going to say that Gov. Romney will win in OH. What else is he going to say even if the opposite were true? He says polls don't decide elections, but voters do. Well, polls involve voters too...it is not like ghosts are consulted to figure out how they plan to vote.
Wow! The suntan man sobered up long enough to face a TV camera without sobbing. Excellent. There is hope for us yet.
I am guessing that somehow my address is screened, since there really isn't anything in my post to catch a filter. Suntan? Sobbing?
The owner of the company that makes the voting machines largely deployed in Ohio is a big supporter and donor of RR. I hope this guy is not "delivering the election" to Romney – as some other GOP supporters have bragged in the past. A free and fair election is more important to democracy rather than who wins.