Obama, Romney Campaign in Pivotal Ohio

    President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event at Kent State University in Ohio, Sept. 26, 2012.President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event at Kent State University in Ohio, Sept. 26, 2012.
    x
    President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event at Kent State University in Ohio, Sept. 26, 2012.
    President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event at Kent State University in Ohio, Sept. 26, 2012.
    Kent Klein
    Both U.S. President Barack Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney are campaigning in Ohio, a state that analysts agree is crucial in this year’s campaign.  New public opinion polls show the president taking the lead in Ohio.  

    As he has so many times in the past few months, President Obama gave a campaign speech Wednesday at a university campus in Ohio.  

    “You may have noticed that there is an election going on here in Ohio," said President Obama.

    At Bowling Green State University, as he would later at Kent State University,  Obama encouraged students to vote.

    Young voters and the middle class were key parts of the coalition that elected Obama in 2008, and he is depending on their support again this year.

    In a state where as many as one in every eight jobs is related to the auto industry, the president defended his trade policy toward China.

    “We have brought more trade cases against China in one term than the previous administration did in two.  And by the way, we have been winning those cases.  We stood up for auto workers against unfair trade practices," said Obama.

    Romney also was in Ohio Wednesday.  He said the president is not tough enough on China when it comes to trade, and that if elected, he will press Beijing harder.

    “We are going to open up more trade where we can compete fairly, but we are going to crack down on China when they cheat.  They have stolen our jobs and that has got to stop," said Romney.

    After years of economic distress, Ohio’s unemployment rate has fallen to 7.2 percent, about one full point below the national average.  Experts believe that could benefit Obama, although Romney credits the drop to the policies of Ohio’s Republican governor.  

    Romney spoke Wednesday at rallies in the Columbus and Cleveland areas.  

    After spending much of last week raising money in Texas and California, the former Massachusetts governor is concentrating this week on Ohio, with a bus tour through the state’s larger cities.

    Public opinion polls indicate that he may have some work to do.

    Several recent polls show that Obama is beginning to increase his lead over Romney in Ohio.  One survey (CBS / New York Times / Quinnipiac) has the president leading by 10 percentage points (53%-43%), and another (Washington Post) shows him ahead by eight (52%-44%).

    Polls also indicate that Obama is broadening his lead in other swing states, including Florida, Virginia and Pennsylvania.

    Some Romney campaign representatives have questioned the accuracy of the polls that show the president’s lead widening. Romney has expressed confidence that he can close the gap.

    No Republican has ever won the presidency without winning a majority of Ohio’s electoral votes, and no Democrat has done so since 1960.

    Ohio is the seventh-largest of the 50 states in population, and is almost equally divided between Democrats and Republicans.  Like many eastern states, Ohio has a large manufacturing base, but like many Midwestern states, it also has a large agricultural economy.

    Obama has visited Ohio 29 times during his presidency.  He marked the formal start of his re-election campaign with a rally at Ohio State University in April.  

    The Romney campaign says the governor has visited 10 times since May 1, and seven times during the Republican primaries.

    Although the election is about six weeks away, early voting and absentee voting in Ohio begin less than a week from now, before the first of the debates between the two presidential candidates.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora