Thursday, October 25, 2012

Tagg Romney Rallies Support In Danville

Tagg Romney rallies support in Danville

By Tiffany Holland

October 24, 2012

When Republican Mitt Romney's oldest son, Tagg Romney, got his chance to speak to a raucous Danville crowd Wednesday, every eye in the room was on him.

"I always get asked this question at the end, so now I deal with it up front — Tagg is unfortunately my real name," said the oldest Romney son to laughter. "It's short for Taggart."

With that Romney had a short, but personal speech, to around 125 supporters at the Danville Victory Office headquarters on Piney Forest Road. He showed up in one of the presidential candidate's campaign buses and they were headed to South Boston immediately after the event.

Romney mostly kept his speech light, telling personal stories of his father and his family to the volunteers who have been working for months to elect the area's Republican ticket — Romney, U.S. Senate candidate George Allen and U.S. Rep. Robert Hurt.

"If we continue for four more years under this current president, I don't know how anyone thinks it's going to be different than the last four years," said Romney.

He called the $16 trillion of U.S. debt and the average American take-home pay "immoral." Romney said his father's experience in business and record as Massachusetts governor should show what kind of leader he would be as president.

"I have two messages when I talk to people," said Romney. "The first is that my dad is extraordinarily competent and qualified. He knows what he is doing."

He joked that there were more people in the crowd than there were registered Republicans in Massachusetts — a heavy blue state. But Mitt Romney got elected governor because the state was facing a massive deficit that Romney said he could fix without raising taxes.

The second thing Romney said he tells people about his father is that he is a "really good man," which got cheers from the crowd. He told several personal stories about how his father helped different people and said it wasn't in his nature to brag about it.

Before he left, Romney went outside to talk to as many supporters as possible who waited to see him. The room was so crowded for his visit, many people had to stand outside. Hurt, who introduced Romney, said this is a continuation of the enthusiasm Southside Republicans had two years ago, when Hurt ousted one-term congressman Tom Perriello.

"It is clear to me, as exciting the election was two years ago, we are seeing triple the excitement," said Hurt. "We are prepared to send a loud and strong message."

Hurt was also glad to hear some of the personal side of a heated campaign and called Mitt Romney a "man of great faith" who cares about "100 percent of the people in this country."

Virginia has become a major swing state in the election and Romney is the latest in a long line of political events that have made a way to the region. Hurt, who is running for re-election, said it looks like the Republican presidential candidate is doing well.

"From the numbers I have seen it looks like he is doing good in the 5th District," said Hurt. "I think he is doing great in Virginia. The only way he is going to do it is to do well in Southside and places like the 5th District. 

Democrats from the Obama campaign have been working the area hard, and have had a local office open since March. Last week, three Democratic mayors in Massachusetts came to Danville to talk to supporters and knock on doors on behalf of the Obama campaign. Danville went in Obama's favor in 2008.

In response to Tagg Romney's Danville's visit, Obama campaign spokeswoman Joanne Peters sent an emailed statement.

"President Obama has a concrete and specific second-term plan to continue restoring economic security to the middle class and to avoid returning to the same policies that crashed the economy," said Peters. "Unlike Gov. Romney, the president has been consistent and clear about his vision and values because he knows his plan will actually create jobs and strengthen the middle class — and that recent history teaches us the right way to grow the economy is from the middle out, not the top down.  President Obama is the right choice for Virginians."

Find additional coverage from ABC 13 HERE.