Power Players

A tale of two stump speeches and two very different candidates

Jonathan Karl
Power Players

Spinners & Winners

For the reporters on the campaign trail, hearing the stump speech -- often over and over each day — is part of the routine. You listen for the slightest changes in the rhetoric being spun in the stump speech as it is delivered before crowds both big and small.

For those reporters on the Mitt Romney campaign, the stump speech is so familiar they nearly know it by heart. Little from this speech has changed from Iowa to New Hampshire to South Carolina and Florida. The speech, like the candidate, is disciplined and focused. ABC's Emily Friedman explains that the Romney stump speech includes lines from the song "America the Beautiful" recited (never sung) every day — often three or four times per day at each event.

But Newt Gingrich campaigns very differently. He never gives the same speech twice. He is as unpredictable as Romney is consistent. In one 12-hour stretch in Florida, reporters heard three entirely different speeches on very different topics — from space policy to an evisceration of his opponents to a history lesson.

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