President Barack Obama spoke in Virginia a day after revealing what he believed to be a valid criticism of his time in office. The president made three campaign stops in eastern and southern Virginia while facing pressure from Mitt Romney.
* The Associated Press reports Obama spoke to a crowd in Hampton Roads, Va., touting his plan to keep income taxes lower on people making $250,000 or less. Otherwise, Obama said, Republicans are "not serious" about reducing the deficit by keeping tax rates lower for the richest Americans. Raising taxes on the rich is seen as Obama's solution to cutting the federal deficit.
* The GOP is calling Obama's ploy a massive tax hike that will hurt job creators. Republicans want the deficit lowered while not raising taxes.
* Romney was not scheduled for public appearances Friday. Instead, the Huffington Post reports the presumptive GOP nominee will make primetime television appearances on CNN, Fox News, CBS, NBC and ABC. Segments will be recorded in the late afternoon to be ready for nighttime news.
* The move was seen as unusual for Romney. Normally he favors Fox News and rarely makes such huge media blitzes all at once.
* Romney's move comes a day after Obama gave an exclusive interview to CBS News to be broadcast Sunday. Obama said his most "legitimate criticism" was about not relating "the story that tells us where he's going." Obama felt a lack of communication was his biggest mistake in his administration.
* Republicans pounced on Obama's assertion. Romney and the Republican National Committee both bashed the chief executive for telling stories without getting results for jobless Americans.
* The presumptive nominee wrote an open letter to Obama ahead of his appearances in Virginia. In it, Romney slams the commander-in-chief for "defense cuts you signed into law" that "hit Virginians hard."
* He continues, "Your insistence on slashing our military to pay the tab for your irresponsible spending could see over 200,000 troops forced from service." Romney further states factories related to military hardware have shuttered and veterans from some of the largest bases in the state are having trouble finding work.
* Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling also wrote an op-ed piece in support of Romney's assertion. Bolling said the cuts "could have a devastating effect on the military which would adversely impact Virginia's economy."
* Romney's remarks came less than a day after making a fundraising appearance in Wyoming with former vice president Dick Cheney. Obama is in Virginia for two days touting his policies in a state he won four years ago, becoming the first Democratic presidential candidate to take Virginia since 1964.
William Browning is a research librarian specializing in U.S. politics.