Mitt Romney returned to his campaign basics Wednesday in Ohio -- focusing on the debt and deficit, an issue recent polls indicate is one of the few advantages he holds over President Obama.
"When (Obama) came into office there was just over $10 trillion in debt. Now there's over $16 trillion in debt. If he were reelected I can assure you it WILL be almost $20 trillion in debt," Romney exclaimed while standing in front of the massive, real-time debt clock that resurfaced for the rally in the Westerville High School's gymnasium.
"It's not just bad for our job creation it will. In my opinion, it is immoral for us to pass on obligations like that to the next generation," he continued.
Romney didn't come out swinging with many of his typical jabs at Obama. Instead, he told the nearly 2,000 supporters that his "heart aches" for the 20 million Americans out of work and that he "will do what it takes" to get the economy back on track.
The most recent national numbers show the Republican presidential nominee trailing nearly 10 points in the battleground states of Ohio and Florida. Romney and his campaign have brushed off the numbers in recent weeks.
"In the coming six weeks, (the numbers) are very unlikely to remain where they are today," Romney said Monday while speaking to the press on his charter jet.
His political director, Rich Beeson, on Tuesday echoed that indifference to the public poll numbers, saying the campaign relies instead on internal data.
"I feel confident where we are in each one of our states," he said. "I have great faith in our data."
The rally Tuesday in which golf legend Jack Nicklaus offered his measured and scripted endorsement marks the second day of Romney and running mate Paul Ryan's bus tour through Ohio.
Romney is crisscrossing the battleground state in a bus with "Romney Ryan. More Jobs. More Take Home Pay" emblazoned across the side. He will hold two more events Wednesday in hopes of gaining ground in the historically must win state.