August 28, 2014

Presidential candidates return to Iowa as election day nears

With just seven days left in the campaign, Mitt Romney and Michelle Obama will hold rallies in Iowa today (Monday) to try to sway undecided voters — and motivate supporters. Iowa is one of just seven states which are considered too close to call — hence the fevered pitch of presidential politicking here.

Romney is due in Davenport this afternoon. Romney previewed his closing message on Friday during a speech in Ames, suggesting it’s time for a “change” election. “President Obama did not repair our economy,” Romney said. Over the weekend Romney won endorsements from several Iowa newspapers, including The Cedar Rapids Gazette, The Quad City Times, The Sioux City Journal and The Des Moines Register.

The Register had not endorsed a Republican candidate for president in 40 years. An Obama campaign spokeswoman dismissed the paper’s argument that Romney would be able to bridge the partisan divide in Washington, saying that was not “based at all in reality.”

The First Lady will lead a rally this afternoon in Iowa City, aimed at college voters. During a late September rally on the UNI campus in Cedar Falls, Mrs. Obama cited the results of the 2008 election, when her husband won Iowa by 147,000 votes.

“That may sound like a lot, but when you break it down that’s just 87 votes per precinct,” she said. Mrs. Obama will campaign late this afternoon in Sioux City. Vice President Biden is scheduled to campaign in Iowa on Thursday, but no other details about the event are available.