Presidential Race

Romney Strategist: Multiple Paths To Victory Tuesday

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Vin Weber, a former Republican congressman from Minnesota and a senior advisor for the Mitt Romney campaign, talks with weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz about the momentum going into Tuesday and why Romney does not need Ohio to win the presidential election.


Well, for a somewhat different take, let's bring in Vin Weber. He is a surrogate for the Romney campaign. He's a senior adviser to the candidate and a former congressman from Minnesota. Vin Weber, welcome.

VIN WEBER: Good to be with you.

RAZ: OK. We just heard from Obama surrogate, Governor Deval Patrick. He says they are not taking any votes for granted, but they're confident that they will pull off a victory on Tuesday.

WEBER: Well, you know, all of us surrogates have to say that about our candidates, and I'm sure Governor Patrick both believes it. But I also know that we've never gone into a presidential election with really a higher degree of uncertainty about the outcome in my adult lifetime. The Romney campaign is expanding the playing field. We believe we have opportunities in states that were not in play three, four months ago that we certainly didn't think would be in play a year ago.

But we can see it's a close election, and, you know, we've got polls on both sides and experts that are projecting different things on Tuesday night. I think Governor Romney is going to win. And I don't think it's going to be quite as close as people think. But, you know, Governor Patrick's a good guy, and he's campaigning for his candidate.

RAZ: OK. If Mitt Romney does not win Ohio, can he still win the election?

WEBER: Yes. Ohio's very important. It's much, much easier to get to the White House if you're a Republican if you win Ohio, and we think that we are knocking on the door in Ohio. But there is still a path. It requires you to win a bunch of states that are tough. You've got to win Wisconsin, probably Iowa, probably Nevada, and those are tough states to win, no question about it.

The other path, though, that we're pursuing - and you'll see it in both our advertising spending and in Governor Romney's schedule for the weekend - is that over the last week, really, Pennsylvania has come into play. And we believe that's real. We're spending money there. I would point out that Democrats must think it's real, too, because they're also spending money there. There are different ways to get there. Clearly, we want to carry Ohio. We're putting a lot of effort into Ohio. We think we can carry Ohio, but there are other ways of getting there.

RAZ: Vin Weber, in the remaining time we have, what is the best case you can make to our listeners who may be undecided, people listening right now, for why they should vote for Mitt Romney.

WEBER: The best case is that even if you believe we did the right things under this administration in reacting immediately to the crisis of the economy in 2008, 2009, we have not seen the kind of recovery that we should see because we have put too big a burden on the private sector. This administration's own projections are that in the next four years, if President Obama's re-elected, we will add $10 trillion to the national debt.

That's the Obama administration's own prediction, a doubling of the national debt. That is an anchor around the economy. We will never get this economy going faster if we don't change policies. And Governor Romney has promised a change in policy to get us back to high growth, good jobs and rising incomes.

RAZ: That's Vin Weber. He's a former congressman and a senior adviser to the Mitt Romney campaign. Vin Weber, thanks so much.

WEBER: Thanks very much. Good to be with you.

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