In Appeal to Working Class, Romney's Tone Sharpens
Campaign thinks it not enough to criticize Obama's economics
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2012 7:42 AM CDT
Mitt Romney listens as vice presidential running mate Rep. Paul Ryan, not pictured, speaks during a campaign rally yesterday in Powell, Ohio.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

(Newser) – Still narrowly trailing President Obama, Mitt Romney is hardening his message in an attempt to nail down the white working-class vote, reports the New York Times. Now concluding that it is not enough to campaign on Obama's economic failings, Romney and his advisers are trying to add edgy overtones of race and class, which resonate with white voters in swing states. "These folks know they are not happy with what Obama has done, but they are struggling between, ‘I voted for him, I liked him, but he’s not getting the job done,' " says an American Crossroads director. "That’s where Mitt needs to take advantage."

But Romney still faces his longtime nemesis: Voters' reluctance or inability to trust him. But, says a GOP pollster, “If he can change perceptions about himself, then the environment takes hold, and if the environment takes hold, they win.” On Friday, Romney made a birther-tinged reference to his own birth certificate, and the Romney campaign is airing ads that incorrectly claim that Obama wants to eliminate work and job training requirements for Welfare beneficiaries. Romney also pushed a message yesterday of Obama's failure to meet his campaign promises.