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CNN Political Producer Rachel Streitfeld
Defiance, Ohio (CNN) – Sen. Rob Portman defended Mitt Romney's stance on the auto bailout Thursday night at a rally for the GOP presidential nominee in the heart of Ohio's Rust Belt.
The issue has dominated the airwaves across Ohio, where Democrats have relentlessly pounded Romney for opposing a government bailout of the automotive industry that ended up saving thousands of jobs.
Speaking just down the road from a General Motors powertrain plant Thursday in Defiance, Ohio, Sen. Rob Portman introduced Romney by saying the president "was not telling the truth" about his opponent's stance and had mischaracterized Romney's position on the bailout during the presidential debates.
"Folks, all the independent fact checkers who have looked at this agree, President Obama was wrong," Portman said. "He was not telling the truth."
Portman – who supported the bailout – pointed out Romney had pushed for government loan guarantees and proposed the government back car buyers' warrantees.
But those proposals came in an op-ed Romney penned in 2008, where he also predicted a government bailout of the Big Three automakers would "virtually" guarantee the "demise" of the industry.
Looking ahead, Portman declared Romney's policies on trade, energy and health care would benefit the industry.
"There is no question in my mind that Mitt Romney's policies for the future are going to be better for our auto companies, for the workers, and for communities like Defiance to get us back on track and to make the auto industry stronger," he said.
Romney did not bring up the bailout, but did mention a Bloomberg report that suggested some auto jobs could be moved to China.
"I saw a story today that one of the great manufacturers of this state, Jeep, now owned by the Italians, is thinking of moving all production to China," Romney said. "I will fight for every good job in America. I'm going to fight to make sure trade is fair, and if it's fair America will win."
A spokesman for the Chrysler Corporation, which owns Jeep, had earlier emphatically denied that report.
"Let's set the record straight: Jeep has no intention of shifting production of its Jeep models out of North America to China," Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications Gualberto Ranieri wrote on Chrysler's blog.
Thursday, October 25 2012, 10:36 PM CDT
Prince Edward presents Edinburgh's awards in Tenn.
May 23, 2013 22:00 GMT
By ERIK SCHELZIG Associated Press
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Queen Elizabeth's youngest son, Prince Edward, is visiting Tennessee to promote one of the British royal family's charities, the Duke of Edinburgh's awards.
The prince presided over an awards ceremony at the governor's mansion in Nashville on Thursday for the first batch of young Tennesseans to participate in the leadership and character program.
About 80 youths received the award by participating in community service, skills development, physical fitness and adventurous journeys through the Boy Scouts, Boys and Girls Clubs, LEAD Academy, Montgomery Bell Academy or the Miss Tennessee Scholarship Organization.
Following the event, Gov. Bill Haslam and first lady Crissy Haslam invited the awardees and their families to tea inside the governor's residence. Later on Thursday, the prince was scheduled to headline a black-tie gala at Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville.
Bernanke signals Fed to maintain stimulus efforts
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Chairman Ben Bernanke is telling Congress that the U.S. job market remains weak and that it is too soon for the Federal Reserve to end its extraordinary stimulus programs.
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