GOLDEN, Colo.— To win the battleground state of Colorado in November, Mitt Romney has one very tall task —winning over Latinos and independent voters after running a staunchly conservative campaign that alienated many of them during the Republican primary.
At the most elaborately staged rally of his campaign, the former Massachusetts Governor sought to do just that Monday night — speaking before a crowd of thousands in an illuminated amphitheater here, with New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez at his side and a diverse group behind him, a few holding signs that said “Democrats for Romney.”
During the nighttime rally at the Red Rocks Amphitheater here on the outskirts of Denver, Romney spoke of his experience as a one-term governor of the liberal state of Massachusetts and argued that he and his running mate, Paul Ryan, who campaigned with him Tuesday evening, could break the deadlock in Washington.
“I came in and some of the folks here were holding signs, ‘Democrats for Romney.’ ... I love that! I love that!” Romney said on Tuesday night, as he spoke before a crowd that in one section formed the shape of Colorado flag by standing in formation in red, blue, white and gold T-shirts. “You see, Paul and I have a few things in common. One is we both learned how to reach across the aisle in our elected office, to find ways to work with Democrats, Republicans, independents to get the job done.
“We need you to reach across the neighborhood to Democrats and independents as well, make sure they understand that this is a year to vote for real change if you want to have real recovery, I need you to get those folks to vote for us,” he said.
Democrats in Massachusetts have argued that Romney did little in his single term there to foster cooperation between himself and Democratic legislators.
Colorado is one of fewer than 10 states whose decision Nov. 6 will hand the presidency to either Romney or President Obama. Both candidates and their campaigns have flooded the state with visits, television ads and other enticements to voters. Recent polling suggests that the race remains a dead heat.