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Romney on early voting, hurricane and his Massachusetts record

October 27, 2012|By Seema Mehta
  • Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney responds to cheering supporters at an airport rally in Kissimmee, Fla.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney responds to cheering supporters… (Joe Burbank / Orlando Sentinel…)

KISSIMMEE, Fla. — As early voting kicked off in Florida, Mitt Romney urged his supporters to head to the polls Saturday.

“Today you can go vote. And it helps for you to vote now because the earlier you vote, the more help you can give us getting other people to the polls because we’re going to have to turn out our people,” Romney told supporters gathered in a plane hangar here. “We need to get people who care about America to go to the polls and vote. This election counts. We’re going to make this election count for America.”

Romney noted that he was changing his campaign schedule and not heading to Virginia on Sunday because of Hurricane Sandy, which is barreling toward the East Coast, after consulting with Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell.

PHOTOS: Hurricane Sandy, en route to "Frankenstorm"

“He said, ‘You know, the first responders really need to focus on preparation for the storm,’ so we’re not going to be able to be in Virginia tomorrow; we’re going to Ohio instead,” Romney said. “But I hope you'll keep the folks in Virginia and New Jersey and New York and all along the coast in your minds and in your hearts. You know how tough these hurricanes can be, and our hearts goes out to them.”

As President Obama hammered Romney’s record as governor of Massachusetts, the GOP nominee boasted of his record of working across party lines, saying that similar bipartisan cooperation was necessary in the nation’s capital.

“In your life, if you’ve got someone you got to work with and you disagree, well you find some way to work together. We’ve got to have to have an administration in Washington, my team in Washington that’s willing to work with people across the aisle to build bridges, to work with other people, to come together to find ways to make America work better,” Romney said. “And I know how to do that, I did that in my state.”

PHOTOS: Mitt Romney's past

Noting that he worked with a legislature that was 85% Democratic, Romney said that he came into office with a multibillion-dollar budget gap.

“We didn’t go to work fighting each other, we came to work to work together. We found a way to do that. So we cut spending, we actually reduced the amount of money government was spending. And then we cut taxes 19 times,” Romney said, not noting that he raised many fees. “We made our state more business-friendly. The result of all this was our job growth went from the basement up 20 points--up 20 states, that is. And then we were able to balance our budget. And by the way our $3-billion budget gap turned into a $2-billion rainy-day fund. Those principles could work to get America together. We’ve got to do it. We can’t do this without the help of the people across the aisle.”

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