AVON LAKE — U.S. Sen. Rob Portman said Friday that electing GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney would help spur development of natural gas, oil and coal.
“Who’s going to benefit?” Portman asked. “The auto companies, because they’re going to sell more cars.”
Portman, R-Cincinnati, energized supporters at Romney headquarters at Learwood Square as part of the “Commit to Mitt Early Vote Express Bus Tour Stop.”
The crowd of about 60 included Romney supporters and a handful of reporters and photographers.
Portman said the campaign was working hard to convince Ohio voters the auto industry would be stronger under Romney.
He attacked President Barack Obama’s statement at the last debate that Romney would not provide government assistance to the U.S. auto companies, even if they went through bankruptcy.
Portman said both Obama and Romney supported a federal role in stabilizing domestic automakers, and Romney discussed federal guarantee of loans and also talked about a structured bankruptcy.
“I believe there were problems with the way Barack Obama did it because there were winners and losers,” Portman said.
Portman said the path to victory in Ohio rests on getting out the GOP vote and “reaching out to what I call persuadable voters.”
He predicted victory on Nov. 6.
“On Nov. 7, we’re going to get working,” he said. “We need a guy like Mitt Romney who believes America is broken — it needs big changes.”
Among those attending the Portman talk was 15-year-old Avon Lake High School sophomore Zach Fechter. Zach was excited about meeting Portman, who was on the short list of candidates for vice president before Romney selected Paul Ryan.
“Around the school I’m known as ‘Mr. Romney,’ ” Zach said. “One of the seniors is a big Obama supporter, and we get in heated debates sometimes.”
Also at the bus tour stop was attorney Sherrill Davidson of Avon Lake, who has been going door-to-door for Romney in Avon and Avon Lake.
“I’ve been a little dismayed by the apathy,” Davidson said. “To squander that right — no matter who you vote for — is not right.”
Contact Cindy Leise at 329-7245 or firstname.lastname@example.org.