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Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Early Word: Close

Today's Times

  • In the final stretch of the presidential campaign, Mitt Romney has used his stump speeches to move from the partisan edges of the Republican nominating contest to the center of American politics. Michael Barbaro writes that Mr. Romney's tonal shift â€" and his adoption of President Obama's “change” mantra - “risks raising the questions about consistency and authenticity that have dogged him, tracking with his muddied stance” on social issues.
  • Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney put their presidential rivalry on hold for another day to focus on relief efforts after Hurricane Sandy. Mark Landler and Michael Barbaro write that Mr. Obama toured storm-ravaged parts of New Jersey with Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican and a Romney ally, offering a glimmer of bipartisanship. The highly visible presence of the Federal Emergency Management Agency showed big government muscle and forced Mr. Romney to defend his small-government vision in Flor ida, where he turned a campaign stop into a supply drive.
  • In Virginia, the dueling campaigns in a Senate race resumed a fierce contest for votes on the ground. Jonathan Weisman writes that in a race that could be decided by a point or two, the campaigns of former Senator George Allen, a Republican, and former Gov. Tim Kaine, a Democrat, are deploying armies of volunteers to knock on doors and make phone calls to voters as the election draws near.
  • The sunny idealism once found in abundance among young campaign volunteers in 2008 has given way to a dreary realism among the crop of volunteers for the 2012 campaigns. Jesse McKinley writes about young volunteers for Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney who have been sobered by a bad economy that is stifling their careers.

    Happening in Washington:

    Economic reports expected today include third-quarter productivity and weekly jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. followed at 10 by data on construction spending for September, weekly mortgage rates and a manufacturing index for October.