FIRST PERSON | MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa -- Over the past two weeks, the presidential election has heated up here. This small town of 27,000 receives visitors from a wide swath of Iowa for its meat-packing, manufacturing, and engineering jobs, and because we boast the only Wal-Mart in a 30-mile radius and 60 miles to the north and east.
The predominantly Democratic neighborhood I live in has been flooded with Obama yard signs and my 50-mile commute into town from Des Moines has recently been enlivened by signs for both candidates. I've received three mailers on behalf of Romney, as well as a visit from one of President Obama's supporters hoping to get us to vote early for the president.
The television remains my main medium for viewing the campaign -- with at least four campaign ads per hour aired for my consideration. The shows don't matter; I see them whether I'm watching my favorite police and lawyer show or professional and college football.
The ads I've seen this week still have President Obama criticizing Mitt Romney. The main difference is that instead of his chiding Romney for being soft on Chinese tire manufacturers, the ads now show Romney saying it's not his job to worry about the 47 percent of the people who don't pay taxes. This is contrasted against pictures of police officers and senior citizens.
This week's Romney ads have been a complete reversal from the governor's previous bashing of the president. I now see 30-second slices of Romney touching one of the same themes he continually hit on during the debate: He has a plan to create 12 million jobs in four years and that if more people have jobs there will be more tax revenue and a lower deficit. True or not, it sounds good on TV.
Will the newfound slant toward positive campaigning pay off for the governor? Discussing issues of substance, while being attacked for placing Big Bird on the budget-chopping block during last week's debate, is certainly bringing this undecided voter closer to his camp.
- Politics & Government
- Mitt Romney