Romney drives economic message on bus tour
WEATHERLY, Penn. (CNN) — Mitt Romney shared anecdotes from a meeting with business owners Saturday morning to continue portraying President Barack Obama as out of touch with the American people.
On the second day of his six-state "Every Town Counts" bus tour in Pennsylvania, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee referred to the private meeting he held with business leaders in his remarks, which occurred before he toured Weatherly Casting & Machine Company.
"And, I must admit, what I heard from talking to them was very different than listening to the president the other day," said Romney, referring to the president's speech in Ohio where the 2012 contenders were both campaigning on Thursday.
"A couple of days ago, he was laying out what he would do to make the economy better and somehow from what I heard from people who actually create jobs is different than a guy who wants to hang onto his job," he said, speaking to hundreds gathered at the alloy foundry.
Like most of his encounters with business owners, the meeting was private but Romney shared a story about an optometrist he met who shared a story that involved Medicaid and an address change form that was 33 pages long.
"This kind of government, regulatory and bureaucratic maze that small businesses encounter in this country is making it harder for them to grow and hire people," he said.
Romney continued to hammer down on the economy. The White House hopeful alluded to the White House shifting the focus away from the economy by announcing an immigration policy change yesterday (please link to the ticker story I wrote with Acosta yesterday).
"I know the president wants to talk about the economy, a little. Not as much as I want to talk about the economy," said Romney. "Last time around as you recall his campaign slogan was hope and change. Now I think he'd like to change it to 'hoping to change the subject.'"
First-term U.S. Congressman Lou Barletta from Pennsylvania, who spoke briefly at the Weatherly campaign stop with another Romney surrogate, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, told Romney after the event that he was going to help him win here in Eastern Pennsylvania.
Romney signaled the challenging road ahead.
"It's going to be a battle. I'd love to get the whole state. We'll see," he said.