QUAKERTOWN, PA - The second day of Mitt Romney's bus tour just demonstrated how a simple stop to meet voters can quickly devolve into chaos and disorder. In what will likely be dubbed "Wawagate", the Romney campaign appears to have chosen to deviate from a scheduled campaign stop because of anti-Romney protesters led by former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell. The stop, originally planned at a Quakertown Wawa - a convenience store attached to a gas station known for its "hoagies" - was suddenly switched to a different one 3 miles away while reporters were en route. Campaign officials wouldn't say why they switched locations, but according to a local report, between 150-250 protesters had gathered outside the original event. Asked by reporters inside the new Wawa about the change of venue, Romney at first tried to play coy. "Just to get a good sandwich," he said. Minutes later, he circled back to the question, telling reporters, "I understand I had a surrogate over there already, so we decided to pick a different place. My surrogate is former Governor Rendell." Rendell, a Democrat and supporter of President Obama, has been critical recently of the Obama campaign, calling their attack ads against Bain Capital "very disappointing." Republicans have jumped on his comments, attempting to show a divide in the Democratic Party. After buying a meatball hoagie, Romney shook hands with a few people outside and then quickly boarded his bus. He was there for less than 10 minutes and did not give prepared remarks.
Romney's bus tour will continue with one more stop today in Pennsylvania, before continuing on to Ohio.
By Christopher Laible