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As he burrows into debate prep, Romney relies on Ryan

September 04, 2012|By Maeve Reston
  • Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan speaks at a campaign event at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan speaks at a campaign… (Mary Altaffer / Associated…)

WOODSTOCK, VT. -- While Mitt Romney remained sequestered with advisors Tuesday, preparing for the fall debates, he leaned on his running mate to deliver the Republican campaign’s message in Iowa just as Democratskicked off their convention.

During a rally in Cedar Rapids late Tuesday, Paul Ryan pointed to what he said was an important milestone for voters to consider when they go to the polls in November.

“We just heard about an hour ago that our government eclipsed the $16-trillion mark in our national debt. This is a serious threat to our economy,” Ryan said. “Of all the broken promises from President Obama this is probably the worst one because this debt is threatening jobs today, is threatening prosperity today and it is guaranteeing that our children and grandchildren get a diminished future.”

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He noted that Republicans featured a giant debt clock at their convention last week in Tampa.

“I don’t see the debt clock at the convention this week,” he said of the Democrats’ gathering. “The problem is the president keeps kicking the can down the road: No leadership on this issue.… We have a very clear choice ahead of us.”

While he noted that President Obama “came into office with a very difficult situation,” he argued that the Democrat “made things worse.” 

Some have been puzzled by Romney’s absence from the campaign trail this week while the Democrats have the spotlight. Though the debates are several weeks away, the Republican nominee spent the day Tuesday at the home of advisor Kerry Healey, who served as his lieutenant governor in Massachusetts.

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Many of his top aides joined him for debate preparations Tuesday in Vermont, including chief strategist Stuart Stevens, campaign counsel Ben Ginsberg, Romney’s former chief of staff Beth Myers, his longtime advisor Eric Fehrnstrom and his closest friend Bob White, who worked with him for many years at Bain Capital and serves as his campaign chairman.

Romney plans to hold an event Wednesday in Lebanon, N.H., which is about a half-hour drive from Healey’s compound -- in a much more crucial swing state.
Twitter: @maevereston

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