Don’t write off Pennsylvania as a swing state quite yet. GOP Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney will make 3 stops on his bus tour through PA, several Republican sources confirm. He’ll be in Bucks, Carbon and Lebanon counties on Saturday.
The details are still being sorted out, but it looks like he’ll start the day in Weatherly, Carbon County. There, he’ll visit with small business owners at Weatherly Casting. The visit was reported by the Citizens Voice.
Next, he’ll head down to Quakertown in northern Bucks County. The type of visit is still in flux, but one source said it’s likely to be held at a gas station.
Pat Poprik, the current Vice Chair of the Bucks GOP, said Romney will receive a hearty welcome when he comes to visit.
“He’ll have a wonderful, warm reception,” said Poprik, who is in line to become Chairwoman on Saturday. “Especially in upper Bucks.”
“We have staunch conservatives, but we also have a lot of moderates. Business people, who have made a payroll. We aren’t far one way or the other, we’re middle of the road. He appeals to Bucks County.”
The visit was also reported by the Morning Call.
Romney will end his afternoon in Cornwall, Lebanon County at a historic furnace in the heart of PA’s agricultural community. This event is expected to be a large, public rally, said Lebanon County GOP Chair Patricia Braden. Doors open at 3:45, so to speak – it’s outdoors.
“It is wonderful. It’s the place to be. We hope to fill all of Cornwall,” Braden said. “For PA, it’s very important that we come out with a supermajority of Republican votes,” in the fall.
“[People in Lebanon County] want to get rid of Barack Obama. This is where the Tea Party really got going in 2009,” said another Republican, referring to those who protested then-Sen. Arlen Specter over the health care law. He said he wasn’t authorized to speak on behalf of the local party, but, “we’re excited to see Mitt come to town.”
The Romney campaign did not confirm the details of his itinerary, though an official schedule is likely to be announced within 24 hours.
The tour comes a few days after Romney, and PA Republican officials, began specifically saying that Pennsylvania is in play in the general. Observers are questioning how seriously the GOP will contend the Keystone state, given that several polls have shown Obama with a comfortable lead here and Romney has yet to spend any significant cash on campaign ads.
Romney’s bus trip will take him on a tour of battleground states. He’s visiting New Hampshire on Friday, PA on Saturday, Ohio on Sunday, Wisconsin and Iowa on Monday, and Michigan on Tuesday.
“For three and a half years, President Obama has paid little attention to the everyday concerns of the American people,” Mitt Romney said when he announced the tour. “President Obama has offered no hope for the future, and he has left American families to bear the burden of his failed policies.”
Yet, “In America’s small towns, you don’t find despair — you find boundless optimism. We know we can make America better, and that is why I am running for president.”
Barack Obama’s campaign welcomed Romney’s visit to PA – particularly Lebanon – with a memo boasting the relative success of rural Americans during the President’s tenure.
“Collectively, Pennsylvania’s small town and rural farmers, workers, and manufacturers contribute to a stronger economy and more prosperous state for all Pennsylvanians,” wrote Sam Cornale, the campaign’s PA State Policy Director.
“President Obama’s continued and consistent investment in rural America stands in stark contrast to Mitt Romney’s proposed budget, which would enact devastating cuts to rural education, health care and infrastructure, while continuing to balance the books on the backs of small farmers and let big agribusiness play by a different set of rules.”