Wednesday September 19, 2012 Happening Now

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney standing firmly behind comments he made at a Boca Raton fundraiser back in May.. that were secretly recorded and distributed to liberal magazine Mother Jones. He says the views expressed in the video may not have been perfectly stated, but they do help define the philosophical choice voters will face. Mister Romney was on "Your World" with Neil Cavuto last night. He told Neil there is now a big contrast between two visions for our economic future. Meantime, he's pointing to new audio released late yesterday by of President Obama talking about "redistribution." Mister Romney said "There is a tape that came out where is the President is saying he likes redistribution. I disagree. I think a society based upon a government centered nation where government plays a larger role and redistributes money, [That's the..] wrong course for America."

The tape Mister Romney is referring to is audio released from 1998 from comments then-Illinois State Senator Barack Obama made at Loyola University. You may remember President Obama made comments about "spreading the wealth around," back during the 2008 campaign.. The Obama campaign's Ben LaBolt responded to the tape with this statement:

"The Romney campaign is so desperate to change the subject that they've gone back to the failed playbook co-authored by Sarah Palin and Joe the Plumber. Fourteen years ago, then-Senator Obama was making an argument for a more efficient, more effective government - specifically citing city government agencies that he didn't think were working effectively. He believed then, and believes now, that there are steps we can take to promote opportunity and ensure that all Americans have a fair shot if they work hard. Unlike Governor Romney, he doesn't believe that if you're a student who applies for a loan you're looking for a handout."

Obviously the campaign is in full swing!

Lots of new polling out today including from AP/GFK and from WSJ and NBC News. AP: Obama: 47% of likely voters and Romney 46%. WSJ/NBC: Obama 50% and Romney 45% (likely voters).

There is also fresh polling on Wisconsin.. newly acknowledged by the Obama campaign as a battleground state.. President Obama visits Saturday. That polling showing Obama with a lead there and a very close senate race.. perfect since we are talking with senate candidate Tommy Thompson.

There's also new polling from NYTimes/CBS/Quinnipiac on VA and CO. And there is a Washington Post poll from VA as well.


...1115EDT -- Briefing by Press Secy Jay Carney. LIVE


1200EDT -- Attends fundraiser at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis, Atlanta, GA. POOL TAPE


0930EDT -- Attends rally at Piedmont Precision Machine, Danville, VA. LIVE via LiveU

Lots of politics today!

In other news:

Chicago teachers voted to end their strike.

At 2pm we get a report from the Inspector General on Fast and Furious - William La Jeunesse and Mike Emanuel on that story.

France says it will close schools and embassies in 20 countries on Friday.. after a French magazine published cartoons of the the Muslim religious leader.

In Syria.. rebels claim they've seized control of an area near the Turkish border.

Clint Henderson is the Executive Producer for “Happening Now” and an avid traveler. Follow his adventures on Twitter, ClintPHenderson, and Instagram, clintpage1.