Romney's son visits Janesville
Q&A with Tagg Romney during his Janesville visit.
JANESVILLE With less than a month before voters decide who will be the President of the United States, one of presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s sons is trying to help his father win over Wisconsin.
At a packed appearance Friday at the Rock County Republican party headquarters in downtown Janesville, Boston native Tagg Romney, 42, sought to fire up the local Republican base.
During a 12-minute speech in front of a bank of television cameras, he called Wisconsin a “critical state” and told dozens of supporters at the event that the GOP’s “ground game” will be crucial if his father’s campaign hopes to win the November election.
Tagg Romney was flanked by Jenna Ryan, wife of GOP vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan, and Ryan’s brother, Tobin Ryan.
The visit comes at a time when Mitt Romney’s campaign is fighting to win battleground states in the Midwest.
Some polls show Romney trailing incumbent President Barack Obama in Wisconsin and elsewhere.
Tagg Romney sought Friday to paint a down-to-earth portrait of his father as a man of empathy and concern for the nation. He highlighted a story about a time when Mitt Romney organized a companywide effort to help a business partner find a daughter who was missing in New York City.
The story comes during a week in which Mitt Romney has attempted to put behind him the polarizing comments he made during a fundraiser about “47 percent of Americans” who pay no income taxes and whom he believes would favor Obama in the election no matter what.
Mitt Romney acknowledged on Fox News on Thursday that he was in the wrong for making those comments.
When asked by The Gazette if he thought the comment had damaged the Romney campaign, Tagg Romney said that in a series of scheduled presidential debates this fall, “people will get to hear the real Mitt Romney—to hear what he stands for and what he believes in. I think we’ll be just fine, and people will recognize just how good of a person he is and how much he cares about America.”
He used his father’s record on cutting taxes and creating a budget surplus as governor of Massachusetts to rip Obama’s plans to raise taxes.
“You’ve got one (Obama) who wants more taxes. They think small businesses and employees can afford that. They want more regulation,” Tagg Romney said.
“Then you have my dad, who wants to cut taxes to get Americans back to work, to decrease government regulations. The choice is pretty clear. We are going to win this election,” he said.
If statewide polls are any indication of voter sentiment in the Midwest, it may not be so easy. A poll this week by the Marquette Law School shows Mitt Romney trailing Obama by 11 percent in Wisconsin.
Tagg Romney dismissed that poll, saying that he’s seen other polls that claim Obama is ahead by a margin of 3 percent or less.
One Romney supporter at the event Friday, Larry Suiter, a 67-year-old Vietnam War veteran from Orfordville, said he thinks many voters haven’t made up their minds.
“I think it’s going to be a hard slog,” Suiter said. “Yeah, it’s going to be a battleground clear to the end.”