Inside Politics

NC could play big role in Nov. election

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The race for the White House is still stubbornly close according to most polls including in North Carolina. However, Mitt Romney's vice-presidential selection seemed to set off a new round of enthusiasm from both sides.

Both campaigns counting on that new-found excitement to help break this race open. The GOP is claiming the momentum is on their side now.

Republicans say look no further than the vice-president's campaign stop in Durham Monday as proof the GOP is more fired up about November than Democrats.

While hundreds showed up in Durham, thousands rallied in High Point and Mooresville for Mitt Romney and running mate Rep. Paul Ryan.

"I mean that's a terrible crowd for the Vice President of the United States," said N.C. GOP Vice-Chairman Wayne King on Monday. "He should be ashamed of the crowd he's getting in there today."

"We're enthused about the choice," said Obama N.C. Campaign Organizer Cal Cunningham. "We're enthused about a president who kept his word."

At the president's Raleigh campaign office, staffers boast of a small army of volunteers. They are still confident the President's dominant ground game can pull off another upset win in North Carolina.

But where's the President? A Democratic official told ABC11 that no one should expect to see President Obama campaigning in the state before Charlotte's Democratic convention next month.

We asked campaign staffers if that's a sign the president's giving up on winning this battleground state which pollsters say will 'lean Republican" in November.

"Absolutely not, in fact the question folks ought to be asking is why the race is even close in North Carolina," said Cunningham.

The Romney camp is counting on excitement from the Ryan pick to help finally break the race open in this state. It's a state that the GOP desperately wants back in the win column in November.

"I think turnout is going to be crucial and I think Congressman Ryan definitely brings a lot to the table," Romney's N.C. Press Secretary Robert Reid.

A Democratic official says the president's decision to stay away from the state until the convention in Charlotte is right out his 2008 playbook where he avoided Colorado until the convention in Denver. He ended up winning that battleground state in 2008.

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barack obama, mitt romney, inside politics, joel brown
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