On the campaign trial after last night's debate, the GOP frontrunner's message is clear -- it's the economy, stupid
DERRY, N.H. -- This morning, newly minted presidential candidate Michele Bachmann took the first flight out of New Hampshire, but Mitt Romney stuck around. Both candidates helped themselves at last night's debate -- Bachmann especially, since so little was expected of her. After her performance, she's sure to get a turn in the spotlight. But debates alone don't win the nomination. Especially in the early states, voters expect plenty of one-on-one attention. So by hitting the campaign trail early this morning, Romney probably did more to help himself.
He hit a couple of breakfast spots before winding up at the Derry Feed and Supply store just before lunch for some empathetic talk with the locals and a short press conference. Several of the locals who showed up mentioned that they had seen him campaign four years ago, and Romney managed to put this experience to use. "I was in these very shops four or five years ago, when I ran for office," he said. "Things aren't better now than they were four or five years ago. This has been a tough time for Derry. You see some shops that have been boarded up, and people who are running shops have indicated that business is trailing off. They expected things to get better in 2011. It hasn't happened. You can't blame George W. Bush anymore. President Obama is going to have to take responsibility for the fact that we're still in a very troubled economy."