Magic Number of the Day: 52

Photograph by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Mitt Romney in Davenport, Iowa.

That’s the number of electoral votes in the four states where Mitt Romney began airing new television ads today with promises about what he would do in his first 100 days as president.

The ads are running in Ohio (18 electoral votes), North Carolina (15), Virginia (13) and Iowa (6). All four states backed President Barack Obama in the 2008 election, with margins of victory ranging from three-tenths of one percentage point in North Carolina to 9.5 percentage points in Iowa.

Those four states are among the eight that backed Obama by fewer than 10 points. Romney needs to win most of the eight to win the presidency.

The North Carolina, Virginia and Iowa spots begin with a promise that Romney will “move to repeal” the 2010 health-care law requiring individuals to purchase insurance. The Ohio spot doesn’t mention health care, beginning instead with a narrator saying Romney will show that he “stands up to China” and “demands a level playing field for our businesses and workers.”

The Virginia and Iowa ads promise to curb federal budget deficits beginning with “$20 billion in savings” that aren’t specified. The North Carolina spot promises “new banking and high-tech jobs” in a state that includes the headquarters of Bank of America Corp. and Wachovia Corp. in Charlotte.

Bloomberg News has more coverage today of its poll, which asked 1,002 U.S. adults, including 734 who are likely to vote in the November election, between June 15-18 about their views of Obama, Romney and policy issues.

Michael Tackett explains why Bloomberg’s poll showing Obama with a 13-point lead, 53 percent to 40 percent, might differ from two other surveys that gave Obama a smaller lead.

Julie Hirschfeld Davis looks at the candidate preferences of some key swing voting groups including suburban independents, Catholics, married mothers and working voters earning $75,000 to $99,999.

Another key voting bloc is Hispanics, who account for about 17 percent of the nation’s population. Obama is speaking today to the convention of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, where he may tout his announcement last week that his administration will end deportation proceedings against younger illegal immigrants who meet certain requirements. Romney spoke at the same event yesterday and criticized Obama’s immigration policy. John McCormick has more.


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