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. Giuliani = Trump

    I can't wait until these relics, Boehner and McConnel, are put out to pasture... they represent the underbelly of humanity.. unabased greed (no regard for the suffering their policies cause).

    November 5, 2012 01:11 am at 1:11 am |
  2. Dogbite Williams

    Tanning lotion has addled his alleged brains.

    November 5, 2012 01:11 am at 1:11 am |
  3. chuck

    Boehner lost all credibility long ago...no one is listening anymore. Obama 2012.

    November 5, 2012 01:17 am at 1:17 am |
  4. JJ

    Oh, lookit that, Boehner mouthing off about his mental masturbations and other assorted fantasies. :)

    November 5, 2012 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  5. UCLA2014

    Poor Mr. Speaker he is displaying the common signs of a man confronted with his death. First he's in denial & Mr. Speaker is in major denial, next he will become angry and blame everyone except Romney for the loss. But he should reflect on this and look at what his party is doing to the country and that maybe its not working.

    November 5, 2012 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  6. apstar

    Who cares what Boehner says or thinks? The statistics aren't there to support his claim. He's just trying to discourage Obama supporters from cating their ballots. What an old, typical tactic. Sorry, it won't work if everyone who values the future of this country and supports Pres. Obama gets to the polls and exercises their democratic privilege! Exclusive BS, should be the headline - Boehner will eat his words soon enough.

    November 5, 2012 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  7. G M Nielsen

    So, Boehner was sitting in a bar when he made this prediction. The reporter doesn't say how many drinks Boehner had downed before he made this wild assumption.

    November 5, 2012 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  8. Joseph Delli Gatti

    Way to go, Mitt Romney!! We love you!

    I'm so happy we don't have to choose between the lesser of two evils like we had to in 2008. We have likely the best presidential candidate of our lifetimes running this year. Mitt Romney is uniquely qualified to handle the challenges our country faces right now.

    Mitt Romney is a good man who led a "stellar" career turning around failing and corrupt organizations in both the private and public sectors. There's no roundabout way to say it. He has a reputation founded on his track record of follow through. He has shown that he can reach across the aisle to accomplish the things that everyone can unite on.

    He gives more of himself to volunteer service, and more of his income to church and charity than any Democrat in federal government. He saved the Olympics, and donated his huge paycheck to charity. He worked as governor of MA for free. He has given roughly 10 percent of his life to service. How could we not want someone like this as our president.

    Vote now, and vote for Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan – they really are America's comeback team. Help give him the election sweep that he's earned! WOOHOO!! ROMNEY/RYAN 2012!!!

    November 5, 2012 01:35 am at 1:35 am |
  9. carolynbild

    All that tanning spray has seeped into your head, sir. Obama will win Ohio. Handily.

    November 5, 2012 01:40 am at 1:40 am |
  10. garwin1

    Sure has been nice lately, not having to hear from Beener.

    November 5, 2012 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  11. Joseph Delli Gatti

    2/3 of GM is owned by and operating in China now! WT_!? It was bought out by tax payer dollars at $53 per share (equivalent), and is now worth $25 per share. US tax-payer funded research and development, and technology secrets for the Chevy Volt were HANDED over to China for free! So the government not only subsidizes production of GM cars, but also props up sales in the US by buying the cars. All of the success of GM is overseas if you don't count govt' purchases. It's sickening!

    Vote for the man who called it right in the first place. Mitt Romney said to honor and support car warranties, etc., but to also have the company go through a managed bankruptcy. That ended up happening when Obama decided to listen to the sound business advice of Mitt Romney. Vote for the man with a proven track record who knows what he's doing. Vote Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan in 2012!

    November 5, 2012 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  12. Umbertoni

    Boehner knows its over Obama has it won.
    His coMments about Ohio are just lip service to republican tea party types
    Boehner is a shrewd politician and he knews he will have to negotiate w Obama now.

    November 5, 2012 01:44 am at 1:44 am |
  13. garwin1

    Is Boehner about to fall off that bar stool?

    November 5, 2012 01:45 am at 1:45 am |
  14. Improvised1

    A politician says his state will be won by the guy within his party. And this is news how?

    November 5, 2012 01:48 am at 1:48 am |
  15. Michael

    Funny how Boehner calls Democrats "the other side". It is a very good representation of the partisanship of Boehner's do-nothing Tea-Party congress. Republicans are more likely to show to the polls than " the other side." This might be true, which is why "the other side" tends to dominate absentee ballot voting.

    November 5, 2012 02:00 am at 2:00 am |
  16. joel

    as we all know, if the turnout for Obama does not match 2008's turnout, it's over for him.

    does anyone actually believe enthusiasm for Obama is at 2008 levels?

    November 5, 2012 02:07 am at 2:07 am |
  17. Name Robert

    LoL dumb M/F

    November 5, 2012 02:09 am at 2:09 am |
  18. linda

    Delusional.

    November 5, 2012 02:10 am at 2:10 am |
  19. Chancho

    is his name pronounced how i think it is pronounced?

    November 5, 2012 02:11 am at 2:11 am |
  20. Mike

    I agree with Riri. Romney stands no chance. It is OBAMA/BIDEN to win 2nd term. It just cannot be any other way!

    November 5, 2012 02:20 am at 2:20 am |
  21. Alfred E. Neuman

    More spin from the losing side.

    November 5, 2012 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  22. michael david lowe usaf msgt retired

    boehner is deaf and stupid...

    November 5, 2012 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  23. Alfred E. Neuman

    If Romney was up in the Ohio polls the Republicans would be shouting at the top of their lungs! He's not so they go into spin mode hoping they can convince voters it is not a lost cause. When Romney has a choice between business and people, he will always choose business and never forget that when casting your vote.

    November 5, 2012 02:22 am at 2:22 am |
  24. Guest

    Boehner's tan is costing Romney votes.

    November 5, 2012 02:24 am at 2:24 am |
  25. barbarianofgor

    It's disgusting ANYONE is voting for Romney...

    Frankly, even the 1%ers need the worker base to make them that rich. And they've largely been accomidating and friendly, hoping someday they'll be 1%ers or find a friend in one who'll help them be a 2 or 3% er... But if Romney hammers the 1% to a .001% and the rest have no hope, ever... Well he'll do more for Communism in America than all the radicals combined. And the resulting thing of having the worker base result, even if the elites "Win" they won't have their lifestyle anymore.

    November 5, 2012 02:27 am at 2:27 am |
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