November 4th, 2012
04:50 PM ET
7 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. Cmack

    Really, Boehner predicts in a sports bar? He must have been soused up again. Obama will win Ohio.

    November 5, 2012 05:38 am at 5:38 am |
  2. ElisaJames

    The only way Romney will win Ohio is if the machines are rigged (untested security patches just installed over the weekend) that his son has stock in. BTW it is not close in Michigan. Romney is a joke here.

    November 5, 2012 05:44 am at 5:44 am |
  3. Jeff Meyers

    Boehner is a knucklehead. If people want to get this country heading in the right direction, after the election, they should seriously work on the heart of the matter which is a dysfunctional congress. IMO, Boehner is an obstructionist. He needs to go.

    November 5, 2012 05:47 am at 5:47 am |
  4. patw

    I live in Ohio and I am voting for Romney. But I don't see how anyone can vote for this piece of trash.

    November 5, 2012 05:51 am at 5:51 am |

    The Jeep lie sealed Mitt the twit's fate. He is not qualified to be President.

    November 5, 2012 05:58 am at 5:58 am |
  6. Dee G

    Bonehead will be crying come Wednesday.

    November 5, 2012 06:02 am at 6:02 am |
  7. lefty loosy

    send obama back to muslim africa and biden to the old folks home for senile politicians

    November 5, 2012 06:09 am at 6:09 am |
  8. flexx

    I think the TAN MAN is Drunk again.....LOL

    November 5, 2012 06:12 am at 6:12 am |
  9. Replace Them All with Pod People

    Boehner then looked at how much it would take to fill up the tank on his bus, and realizing that the gas was to be paid for by the pennies of the workers, he began crying. Through his tears, he kept his hand out.

    November 5, 2012 06:13 am at 6:13 am |
  10. david esmay

    I'm John Boehner, and I'm an orange, whining, POS. Oh, and I approve this message.

    November 5, 2012 06:17 am at 6:17 am |
  11. LizardLance

    Boehner has been bought by the Tea Party and has no real interest in serving America. He's against anything the Democrats support, even if that might be clean water and oxygen. He and the Tea Party crazies like Grover Norquist and Donald Trump need to go away so our nation can be great again.

    November 5, 2012 06:17 am at 6:17 am |
  12. The Other Dale

    The GOP's top guy (and Boehner really is the only success story the GOP has these days, and that's a bit iffy at best) is telling the press two days before the election, "it's too early to tell" and "we've got a margin of error." That pretty much says it all right there; the Republicans figure they're going to be lucky if they keep what they've got and are suspecting the worst.

    The media can play this out to be a horse-race as much as they want, but those actually IN the process already know the outcome.

    November 5, 2012 06:19 am at 6:19 am |
  13. Please Grow Up

    Republicans who serve the Tea Party masters – please put country before money.

    November 5, 2012 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  14. BostonBob

    As much as I dislike Obama, voting for Romney would be an even worse mistake.

    We are faced with the choice of two bad candidated but Romney would be worse for all of America – even the 1%.

    I think the polls are showing exactly that right now.

    Most people hate Obama due to his politics or inherent racism but Romney represents the worst of all worlds... a return to Bush's interventionist policies, guaranteed wars with Iran and everyone else who he (or Israel) doesn't like.

    Mammas better hug their sons (and daughters) because if Mittens becomes presendent an awful lot of them are going to die in useless wars around the globe to enrich the 1%.

    November 5, 2012 06:28 am at 6:28 am |
  15. jacksays

    John Boehner is an embarrassment to the State of Ohio. Period. No matter WHAT party he's with.

    November 5, 2012 06:33 am at 6:33 am |
  16. marie

    Go Romney/Ryan!!!! We have had 4 years of Dumbo the President and Mr. Dentures V.P. You have spent more time on talk shows then in the oval office and your RECORD SHOWS IT. TIME TO SAY SAYONARA!!!!!!!!! If you get in be ready to be impeached and Hillary following suit over LIBYA. YOU ARE A DISGRACE TO AMERICA.

    November 5, 2012 06:35 am at 6:35 am |
  17. Thomas

    Why does this guy always look like a Bad guy in a James Bond movie?

    November 5, 2012 06:38 am at 6:38 am |
  18. Franklin Cord

    It's the job of GOP leadership to always support their nominee. Boehner's concession that the auto bailout may help out Obama in Ohio is a tacit admission that the GOP cheerleading is pointless and Obama will win.

    You have to read between the lines with these people.

    November 5, 2012 06:41 am at 6:41 am |
  19. Stephen

    Wow, big exclusive.

    November 5, 2012 06:41 am at 6:41 am |

    The party of NO is dying. There is no excuse for Mitch McConnell refusing to help this country by voting against everything President Obama has proposed.

    November 5, 2012 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
  21. DERASA

    My prediction is that voters will send you to where you deserve to be: Out of the Congress, and with you a bunch pf Republicans that only to make things worse for the president didn't approve laws to benefit us all.

    November 5, 2012 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  22. LesC

    The only way that Romney can win in Ohio is if the republicans cheat.

    As usual, Boehner is full of crap! Poll after poll has shown the President winning in Ohio. There is an unmovable majority of Ohioans that all the corporate money, misinformation, phony advertising, rallies and personal visits poured into this state by Romney/Ryan and their surrogates have not been able to move from their support for the reelection of President Obama. A couple of weeks ago the Romney campaign realized they were not going anywhere in Ohio and deciided out of desperation to try to open up the campaigns in Pennsylvania or Michigan. How's that working for you Mitt?

    November 5, 2012 06:44 am at 6:44 am |
  23. MC

    Boehner, a notorious drunkard opened his beer hole to shill for George Romney Bush's re-election.

    November 5, 2012 06:44 am at 6:44 am |
  24. Rick

    Yes Boehner, if your party keeps the long lines going so that everyone will not be able to vote, Ohio can go to Mitt. My out rage as well as others should be loud and clear. It is a fact that if you keep the lines long to where everyone cannot vote which party will win. This should be look at in shame for our nation!

    November 5, 2012 06:46 am at 6:46 am |
  25. angryersmell

    There you have it, folks. And since we all know Boehner lives in Oppositeland, I think we can now safely call this thing.

    November 5, 2012 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
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