Obama vs. Romney in Pennsylvania
June 30th, 2011
09:14 AM ET
11 years ago

Obama vs. Romney in Pennsylvania

(CNN) - Mitt Romney will travel to Pennsylvania Thursday on the same day as President Obama in a political move to hit the president over his handling of the economy and a clear symbolic step as the frontrunner in the GOP presidential field.

The former Massachusetts governor will hold a press conference outside Allentown Metal Works, a closed-down Pennsylvania factory Obama visited in 2009 while touting the economic stimulus package, before and after attending fundraisers in Philadelphia.

Meanwhile the president will attend two fundraisers for the Democratic National Committee also in Philadelphia. Thursday's trip is his thirteenth trip to the Keystone State since taking office and his third since announcing his re-election campaign April 4.

Romney's visit is the latest in a string of attacks on the president's economic record as the Republican candidate highlights his entrepreneurial past. A new web video released Thursday from the campaign quotes Obama from his 2009 stop at the plant followed by local media reports on its closing.

The 40-second spot details the economic situation in the presidential swing state, including the over 470,000 unemployed residents and ends with his oft-used tag line, "Obama isn't working."

"Two and a half years ago, President Obama said that if he didn't get the economy back on track, then he would be a one-term president. He is right," Romney said in a statement. "Pennsylvanians have run out of patience."

The Democratic National Committee hit back at Romney for his "failed leadership" while governor of Massachusetts.

"As a candidate, Romney has double downed on the failed economic policies that brought us to the brink of a second Great Depression," a release from the DNC said.

In a DNC conference call with reporters Thursday, former Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania said the Romney event was a "cheap shot" and that the plant's closing was unrelated to the president's policies.

The president was in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania last week and Philadelphia on April 6. According to a recent Quinnipiac University poll, 48 percent of voters in the state approve of Obama's performance as president and 48 percent disapprove.

He won the politically important state in the 2008 presidential election with 55 percent of the vote to GOP candidate Sen. John McCain's 44 percent. Former President George W. Bush lost the state's 21 electoral votes in the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections, to former Vice President Al Gore with 50 percent in 2000 and Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts with 51 percent of the vote in 2004.

However, 2010 was a good year for Pennsylvania Republicans. Republican Pat Toomey won election to the Senate and voters ousted four incumbent House Democrats.

- CNN's Adam Levy contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Pennsylvania • President Obama
soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. Concerned Citizen

    Romney has failed the Republican Party he is a weak and I'm positive Americans will not elective a mormom for President

    June 30, 2011 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  2. New York Thru&Thru

    Go Get 'em Romney!

    June 30, 2011 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  3. Donkey Party

    Perhaps Mittsy should be questioning his treasonous Republican pals why they have fought Obama on every single economic issue, even on policies near and dear to right-wingers?

    June 30, 2011 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  4. FM

    Hey Romney, it is not the President only who is going to create 14 million jobs or more for those who don't have any. You can not do it yourself either. Why don't you go after the GOP congressmen and women who campaigned and won last Nov. and promised to create jobs once elected. If you are going to campaign like them (GOP congress), am afraid those who are clever enough will not give you even half a vote!

    June 30, 2011 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  5. chris

    ok we wher in 8 trillion in the hole and now we are like 14 trillion in the hole obam is not skilled enough to take office agine im not racist but the only reason he did win was him being black he has no skill at all

    June 30, 2011 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  6. Tony Z

    If you couldn't beat McCain than your not ready for Obama. He inherited the country from the worst President of Modern Time and has made things better. Romney what have you been doing for 3 years. Tell me how many jobs you have created.

    June 30, 2011 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  7. ConservaFASCISTS

    Romney claims he's a businessman and create jobs. But just how many jobs did he have outsourced to other countries while he was CEO of his firm? He's not a job creator. He's a job destroyer!!!!

    June 30, 2011 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  8. Tim

    This Romney fellow has about as much a chance of healing our economy as my dog. Oops, I don't have a dog.
    What is it about someone that previously owned a business and may be running for higher office that makes the conservative-minded members of our society drool. I guess it's because they feel that running the government is like running a business. That, of course is ridiculous. In the private sector, we don't get to elect our CEO's, COO's, CFO's, Board of Directors, etc. That and the fact that you'd be running a business that has about 200MM customers.

    June 30, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  9. Barry from Wisconsin

    Sad isn't it that wannabe politicians need to trash EVERYTHING an incumbent has accomplished. Huntsman, in his first address seems to be taking the high road – unlike all the rest of the right-wing tea party owned Republicans.

    I will still vote for the President, but it is refreshing to see – at least at first – someone who seems to want to explain how he (or she) can do things better.

    June 30, 2011 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  10. maikl

    Obama made things better? are you kidding. He made it much worse. Gas price, food price, wars,jobs,debt, what better?.. His policy is worse.

    June 30, 2011 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  11. Sandy

    Jobs have been created for 14 months straight under Obama. Massachusetts was nearly last in job creation under Romney.

    June 30, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  12. Mitt Romney - He Will Say Anything To Get Elected

    Mitt Romney Fires Workers – – He Doesn`t Hire Them.

    The man inherieted from his rich daddy and made more money as a Corporate Raider & Job Outsourcer. He`s a Wall Street guy.

    Does he REALLY think lunch pail carrying Pennsylvanians will cast their lot with him?

    He and his type are exactly the kind of people that put them OUT of WORK!

    June 30, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  13. sonny chapman

    What is the best estimate for the total # of jobs Mitt terminated by down sizing companies & making tens of millions of $ in the process ?

    June 30, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  14. GI Joe

    Romney likes to outsource jobs and close down companies (unless they are adding $$$$$ to his pockets). He doesn't stand a chance - better get on your knees to Joseph Smith, Mittens.

    June 30, 2011 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  15. diridi

    Romney may be front runner in GOP, it is going to be very hard.....others do not have brain at all....true....in GOP....

    June 30, 2011 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  16. The Elephant in The Room

    How many companies has Mitt Romney`s firm, Bain Capital, taken over in states like PA, IN, OH, MO, etc.?

    How many people did they let go to squeeze profits higher so that Mitt could skim MILLIONS of dollars of cream off the top?

    How much production was shifted off-shore to locales with more laxed employee safety laws? With shody environmental standards for clean water and air? I`d like to see an exhaustive list.

    The so-called "business skills" of Mr. Romney are NOT what America needs.

    June 30, 2011 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  17. chris24

    Funny how the republicans can complain about the debt ceiling without commenting
    on who ran up the debt with 2 wars that were never funded.

    June 30, 2011 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  18. Rudy NYC

    chris wrote:
    ok we wher in 8 trillion in the hole and now we are like 14 trillion in the hole obam is not skilled enough to take office agine im not racist but the only reason he did win was him being black he has no skill at all.
    Your numbers are a bit off. Most people erroneously accuse Obama of adding $4T to $5T to the deficit. Here's how they come up with those numbers.

    The deficit was roughly $10T. The FY08-09 budget from Bush had a $700B deficit before TARP ballooned it out to $1.4T.

    The FY09-10 budget had the same base deficit as the previous year, $700B. Add in half of Recovery Act and lost revenue from jobs losses (remember we were bleeding over 700k/month) and the total deficit ran close to $1.5T.

    The FY10-11 budget was written by the GOP controlled House and is similar to the previous year. We ran the same deficits, and the same extra costs dues to lost revenue and the second half of the Recovery Act kicking in.

    It should be noted that an additional $1T will be added to the deficit by 2012 because of the extension of the "temporary" Bush Tax Cuts, which have added more to the deficit than the wars and entitlements combined. They cost a trillion dollars every two years. This is the road that GWB set the country on when we hit the ditch. At the insistence of the Republicans we are still on that road, which you have quite accurately deemed a failure.

    June 30, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  19. Bob in Pa

    When will you all learn that the government doesn't create jobs other than more government and an occasional public works project that is short lived. Obama admin is now so desperate to make it look like he is creating "Green" jobs that they want to take shortcuts disrupt frequencies on the power grid so they can quickly attach bad tech to it. Shrink the government, simplify the tax code (flat tax no more loopholes and hoaky credits) when people have money they have the power to run this country the right way.

    June 30, 2011 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. GI Joe

    The cost of both unfunded wars (so far) is close o $4.4 TRILLION – those costs were kept Off The Books by Bush, but have been added in by Obama. Obama did NOT create that debt, he just brought it to light.

    Quit Lying Republicans!!

    June 30, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  21. Al-NY,NY

    Mittens doesn't have a clue as to how to create jobs and his buddies in congress who campaigned on jobs haven't lifted a finger to actually do anything. They want the economy to stay down so they can blame it on Obama. Sorry GOP but YOU are gonna be held responsible for it.

    June 30, 2011 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  22. patNY

    With half of tax filers not paying any federal income tax, no wonder we are in the hole we're in...and we can thank GOP St. Reagan and the ones that followed him, because this was a result of them not wanting to raise minimum wage.

    June 30, 2011 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  23. Rudy NYC

    It should be noted that during the period that Romney served as Gov. of Mass. that his state ranked nearly last in jobs creation, which was during a period of supposed economic boom, while his neighboring Democratic governers faired so much better. Gov. Romney's economic *genius* might work well for a private company because you can simply lay off workers and return the company to profitability. Taking the equivalent action when leading a government would mean doing what? You cannot simply layoff people from the economy. Or can you? Yes, you can disenfranchise entire demographics of people from thriving in the economy. It is called "trickle down economics," which has done nothing but kill the middle class in this country.

    June 30, 2011 10:40 am at 10:40 am |