By Janet Hook
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Mitt Romney, launching a pointed new attack on President Barack Obama as he plunges into the 2012 general election fight, traveled to the site of Democrats’ upcoming national convention to argue that Mr. Obama has failed to deliver on the economic promises he made four years ago in his 2008 convention speech.
Mitt Romney speaks at a campaign stop in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday, April 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)
“He has failed by the measurements he set,’’ said Mr. Romney, citing the nation’s continuing high unemployment and other economic woes that Mr. Obama had promised to alleviate. “Even if you like Barack Obama we can’t afford Barack Obama.’’
The 15-minute speech, billed by the Romney campaign as a “prebuttal’’ to Mr. Obama’s convention address more than four months from now, was staged in an office across the street from the Bank of America stadium, offering a commanding view of the place where Democrats will gather.
The speech was part of a broader effort by the Romney camp to heighten the contrast between the former Massachusetts governor and Mr. Obama now that the GOP primary fight is effectively over.
North Carolina, which Mr. Obama won in 2008 but is in danger of losing this year, is one of a series of battleground states Mr. Romney is campaigning through this week. He goes to Ohio Thursday, one day after Mr. Obama visited the state, and then on to Arizona where he will address a Republican National Committee meeting of state party chairs. He spent two days campaigning in Pennsylvania early this week.