November 4th, 2012
04:50 PM ET
2 years ago

FIRST ON CNN: Boehner says Romney will win Ohio, despite auto bailout issue

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.

READ MORE: Boehner expects temporary fix to avoid fiscal cliff

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."


Filed under: John Boehner • Mitt Romney • Ohio
soundoff (414 Responses)
  1. Tom Joad

    The Master Boehner and his GOP thugs fought every stimulus that Obama tried to initiate. Now they cry about the economy and unemployment....the Repubs put us in this hole and have helped keep us there.. They should pay for it on Tuesday, big time.

    November 4, 2012 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  2. fitz

    Boehner will have plenty to cry about come Tuesday night. I think all this media talk about dead heats, etc. is just drama to sell ad space. Every educated person I know is voting for Obama. 95% of the women I know are voting for Obama and the Democratic ticket. Any one under 40 I know is voting for Obama. Only narrow minded Catholics, Mormons, and racists are voting for Romney.Oh, and some of the 1%ers. Romney has the moral backbone of an eel. He is totally unethical. He is a liar. Plain and simple. If evangelicals support Romney, they are total hypocrites.

    November 4, 2012 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  3. rosie

    ohio like the rest of the country does vote with their wallet and Romney can take the state I agree with Boehner wake up democrats!

    November 4, 2012 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  4. hankers

    and did he also predict Cincinnati Bengals would win?

    November 4, 2012 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  5. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Romney could win Ohio but still lose the race. Obama doesn't need to Ohio, but it would be nice to add to the margin.

    November 4, 2012 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  6. travisgentry

    Boehner knows Mitt's son owns polling machines in the state.

    November 4, 2012 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  7. DP

    Whoever is in charge of Ohio voting is simply dishonest and crooked. They have made sure that there is no extended voting like the 5 weekends there were in 2008, mainly to suppress the Democrats vote. Hopefully they get a massive punch on the face come Tuesday, I know who they are!

    November 4, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  8. EplurisUnum

    Ohio is ours, Boehner is right. The South will rise again!

    November 4, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  9. PBARGER

    Well, at least he is in his element a BAR! Truth is he knows the truth ans started drinking early......

    November 4, 2012 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  10. Sf

    Gee do i smell some dirty work being planned in ohio mr. Speaker?!!! Disenfranchisizing voters is NOT the way to win an election u disgusting human being!!! So all the polls that have obama in the lead, the people standing in the long lines being purposely denied access to vote are there to support romney?! NOT!

    To my fellow americans in the swing states, PLEASE STAND VIGELANT AGAINST THE RIGHT WING WHO ARE TRYING TO STOP YOU FROM VOTING!!!

    Romney is NOT whats good for america! Neither is that idiot ripyan!

    November 4, 2012 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  11. Sea Bass

    I think speaker Boehner is delusional – likely from spending too much time in the tanning booth this weekend.

    November 4, 2012 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  12. CMDM

    Only way Romney wins Ohio is if his son's plan to rig the Ohio voting machines work. Boehner's not worried because he knows there are dirty tricks at play.

    November 4, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  13. TerryG

    Will he cry if his prediction does not come to pass?

    November 4, 2012 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    Of course he predicted; he has already told the republicans in that state cheat.

    November 4, 2012 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  15. Name john doe

    Ah I'm enjoying the desperation these Republicans are showing to get a few votes. They know Obama has this won.

    November 4, 2012 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  16. Blanca Vazquez

    Boehner should be gratefull to Obama for save so many jobs in Ohio.Looks to me that he never heard what Romney said about auto industry. " Let go bankrupt ".wow !!!! Just another millionaire like Trump who doesn't have to worry about that the place where u work closed.

    November 4, 2012 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  17. bostoniansr

    Speaker can shed his crocodile tears and then have a secret meeting on how to deny Obama (and America) any progress...

    November 4, 2012 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  18. OA

    how is this race even close. You Americans are a joke. How can Willard be even thought of as a president of the united states. So moral ethics is no longer needed to lead the free world? its pathetic that someone who blatantly lies to you in your face, on a daily basis is even a contender. I just hope as a Canadian yall arnt as stupid as we (Canadians) and the world think you are. prove us wrong obama2012

    November 4, 2012 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  19. Wes Scott

    I am just surprised and amazed that the Weeper of the House would predict republiKKKan victories in Ohio! I mean, what ELSE is going to say? He would not be a very good team player of he did not support his team, even in the face of sure defeat. He must have been taking cheerleading lessons from Texas Governor Rick Perry who was a Texas A&M Aggies cheerleader (because he was too sissy to play football.)

    November 4, 2012 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    Honestly if romney wins i move my family to canada

    November 4, 2012 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  21. Larry in Houston

    it's too bad that people like him / McConnel / Cantor / Grassley / Hatch / has to be the ones to constantly block and say No to everything that the rest of the congress wants to work with, or do for this country. I guess Virginia & Kentucky & Ohio & Idaho & Iowa – must be in Love with these guys. Pitiful I tell Ya, Just pitiful.
    May the Best Man Win – 2012

    November 4, 2012 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  22. Maria

    One can dream

    November 4, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  23. MJDC

    Pure smarmy....so disingenuous he even disgusted my dad, who loved just about everyone. He is so not honest, about anything. It really makes me sad.

    November 4, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  24. Jim

    Shocking. Call it wishful thinking. Boehner is a weak Speaker since he has no control over his GOP members. Maybe, with luck, his tenure will end with the election.

    November 4, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  25. Nobull4U

    Of course Boehner is going to say that Romney will win Ohio! He and bother Romney are both Tea Party Repukians. They will do/say anything to help a fellow Puke win.

    November 4, 2012 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
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