Proof of Nevada’s importance in the outcome of the horse race that is the presidential election continued to be on display today, with President Obama visiting Las Vegas and GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan making stops here and in Southern Nevada.
Ryan, appearing in front of a crowd in Reno estimated by local law enforcement at about 600, continued to push the Romney-Ryan ticket message calling for change, pointing to Obama’s failed efforts at job creation.
Paul Ryan speaks at a rally today in Reno. Nevada News Bureau.
Nevada leads the country in unemployment at 11.8 percent in September.
He also stumped for Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., who is locked in a battle with Rep. Shelley Berkley in the U.S. Senate race.
With only days before the Tuesday general election, both campaigns continued to press undecided voters in battleground states including Nevada and Colorado.
“The economy is limping along,” Ryan said. “It’s growing at less than half the rate President Obama said it would if he could just pass this stimulus plan. This is not what a real recovery looks like.
“The president can’t run on this record,” he said. “He can’t say to Nevadans, ‘look at my record therefore vote for me.’ This is why he’s running this kind of a campaign of division, of distraction, of distortion. To try and win an election by default. We’re not going to let him get away with it, are we.”
Ryan criticized a recent comment by Obama that he would create a new cabinet position focused on business if he wins another term, saying such a position already exists and is called the Secretary of Commerce.
“We don’t need a new secretary of business,” he said.
What the county needs is immediate presidential executive orders putting “ObamaCare on the path to extinction,” cutting red tape and excessive federal regulation and allowing energy production on federal lands, Ryan said.
At nearly the same time in Southern Nevada, Obama took the stage with crowd chants of “four more years,” according to an account from the press pool reporter covering the event.
About 4,500 people were on hand to hear the president speak, according to North Las Vegas Director of Administration Al Nayola. Obama began by addressing the crisis wrought by Hurricane Sandy in the Northeast, assuring the crowd that help will come for them.
Obama then laid out the choices people have in this election, highlighting the differences between him and Romney. He talked about the growth of jobs in the country and the end of the war in Iraq. Whenever he referenced Romney’s policies the crowd “booed,” until he turned it into cheers by saying, “Don’t boo, vote.”
“We made real progress in the past four years, but Nevada, you know our work is not done,” Obama said.
Ryan also planned to visit Southern Nevada today, not to rally voters but to stop by the Romney-Ryan campaign office to thank volunteers.
Early voting ends Friday in Nevada. Election day is Tuesday.