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Romney touts agenda for ‘winning season’


GOP nominee rallied loud crowd in Ohio

CINCINNATI – Unveiling a new campaign speech, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney vowed Saturday to lead America to a “winning season” and insisted that his party would stick to the promises of fiscal responsibility that it had abandoned in the past.

“We’re going to finally have to do something that Republicans have spoken about for a long time, and for a while we didn’t do it. When we had the lead, we let people down,” Romney told a roaring crowd in Ohio as House Speaker John Boehner, a longtime congressional leader, stood behind him. “We need to make sure we don’t let them down this time. I will cut the deficit and get us on track to a balanced budget.”

The former Massachusetts governor blames President Barack Obama, a Democrat, for the country’s exploding debt and deficits.

Romney himself has not yet provided enough policy detail to show whether his budget plan would cut the deficit in the long term. The budget that his running mate, Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, wrote and that House Republicans passed this year shows a decline in the deficit each year from 2013 until 2017, when it is forecast to be $488 billion. But beginning in 2019, it begins rising again each year through 2022, when it is forecast to be $728 billion.

Two days after accepting his party’s nomination, Romney rolled out a pared-down version of his acceptance speech. His Ohio appearance was the first of two campaign events planned for Saturday. Those were his last scheduled public appearances before he spends a few days in New England preparing for three debates with Obama planned for October.

A Romney spokesman said the campaign currently has no public events planned for the most competitive states during the Democratic National Convention that starts Tuesday, and that Romney would be sequestered with Ohio Sen. Rob Portman preparing for the debates. Obama campaigned in three battleground states last week during Romney’s Republican National Convention.

Ryan, the vice presidential nominee, will campaign in Greenville, N.C., Monday, and other Romney allies also will make appearances on his behalf.

On Saturday, Romney stood in a cavernous Art Deco train station in the heart of the industrial Midwest – the Union Terminal in Cincinnati – and told a screaming, cheering crowd that the country is stronger when it hangs together. His voice was hoarse as he delivered his remarks, though he was clearly buoyed by the energy of the crowd.