By Jueseppi B.
Mitt Romney rally in Ohio disrupted by protesters
June 17, 2012, 6:53 p.m.
A small-but-vocal band of protesters tried to drown out the likely Republican nominee as he delivered his standard stump speech during rallies in Newark and Troy.
The frenzy illustrates the perils of standard stump speeches for a candidate who has spent much of the past two months staging heavily scripted events in closed settings. As the election comes to a full boil, Mr. Romney can expect similarly unruly crowds, even as the campaigns and security will do their best to keep the rabble rousers at bay.
“Romney, go home!” a dozen or so screamed from the crowd of several hundred Romney supporters in this small town in Boehner’s congressional district. Boehner shouted to be heard over the din.
“President Obama and Democrat colleagues in the Senate continue to block all of the bills that we send over there,” Boehner hollered. “We need to get rid of the roadblock, and we need to put somebody in the White House who understands our economy and who will work with us to put the American people back together again.”
Romney also spoke as loudly as he could while nervous campaign staff scurried about, trying to figure out how to stifle the commotion. “Romney, go home!” the chants continued.
With a bank of news cameras on a platform overlooking the scene, involving the police or Secret Service presented a risky option.
Midway through Romney’s stump speech, his aides placed loudspeakers in front of the protesters — to little effect. Romney tried to ignore the noise.
His wife, Ann, had taken another tack at an earlier rally outside an ornate courthouse in Newark, Ohio, where protesters behind police barricades shouted, “We’re the 99%!”
“We’ve got some distracters out there,” she told the crowd of a few thousand, which erupted in cheers to drown out the demonstrators. “But you know what? We love this country, and we love families.”
The Democratic National Committee has organized anti-Romney “middle-class under the bus” protests to track his five-day trek across the rural areas and small towns of New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa and Michigan.
But one of the Troy demonstrators, Dominic Mendiola of Hartville, Ohio, said their group was organized by Ironworkers Local 550 in Canton, Ohio.
During the Newark event, protesters also sought to shout down his surrogates and his family as they introduced him to Ohio voters. Mr. Romney seemed to have no problems handling the shouts while his wife, Ann, seemed slightly taken aback by the reception.
“We can be just as loud about how much we love this country,” Mrs. Romney said as supporters shouted their own pro-Romney chants. The supporters equaled the volume of the protesters at both stops.
As Mrs. Romney and the others spoke, a plane flying overhead carried a banner reading, “Mitt — I Can See 3 Of Your Houses From Here.”
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