A warm, charismatic figure, Mrs. Romney has stepped up her campaigning this week and drew rave reviews with her convention speech Tuesday. Aides say she'll be on the road as often as possible, partly because the candidate tends to be more relaxed and confident when she's around. One concern is her health. She suffers from multiple sclerosis, and too much flying or exhaustion can hamper her for days if it's not managed.
To sell himself this fall, Romney has turned to a group of admakers from Hollywood and Madison Avenue, collectively dubbed "Mitt's Mad Men" inside the campaign.
Starting Friday, he'll be able to tap his huge stockpile of general election cash, a chunk of the $177 million he had on hand as August began. Obama's campaign and party had $127 million available, according to the most recent public data.
Romney's cash will be spent primarily on television advertising and get-out-the-vote operations in the most competitive swing-voting states: Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa, Nevada, Colorado and New Hampshire. He's also targeting North Carolina. And he's looking at making a more aggressive play for Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, where outside groups have been on the air for weeks.
Romney will have only a few more opportunities to send a crystalized message to Americans still questioning whether he has what it takes to be president.
To that end, the stakes are high for a trio of October debates.
He's already been preparing for them by reading heavy briefing books. His advisers view these face-to-face meetings with Obama as the best opportunity for Romney to demonstrate just how he stacks up against the president.
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