Obama swings over Romney

President Barack Obama holds a slight lead over his Republican rival, Mitt Romney, in key swing states that could determine the outcome of the 2012 presidential race, a new opinion poll found. The USA On Monday/Gallup survey showed Obama ahead of Romney 47 per cent to 45 per cent among registered voters. The states covered by the poll included Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

Swing states are usually not firmly or predictably aligned with either Democrats or Republicans and as such, in many instances can determine the outcome of national races. In the rest of the country, Obama led Romney 48 per cent to 44 per cent, the survey said on Sunday.

The poll of 2,404 registered voters was conducted June 22-29 and had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus four percentage points Meanwhile, after systematically targeting him on the issue of outsourcing of jobs to India and China, senior Obama campaign leaders now have attacked Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for his 'secretive' offshore investments in Bermuda and Cayman Islands.

Robert Gibbs, a top campaign adviser to President Barack Obama, called on Romney to release more than the two years' worth of tax returns he has so far made public as a way to answer questions about his investments.

'This is a guy whose slogan is 'Believe in America,' and it should be 'Business in Bermuda,'' Gibbs told CNN's State of the Union.

Democratic Party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz told Fox News Sunday, 'Americans need to ask themselves, why does an American businessman need a Swiss bank account and secretive investments like that?'

'I've never known of a Swiss bank account to build an American bridge, a Swiss bank account to create American jobs, or a Swiss bank account to rebuild the levies to protect the people of New Orleans,' Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley told This Week.

The seemingly coordinated attacks immediately preceded the release of ads by Obama camp's
Truth Team
and DNC capitalising on renewed focus on Romney's offshore finances after a Vanity Fair report released last week. The report reveals a corporation set up in 1990 in Bermuda owned by Mitt Romney and revisits details of his Swiss bank account and offshore tax havens.

Much of Romney's fortune lies well hidden in a network of opaque offshore investments including some USD 30 million in the Cayman Islands, Vanity Fair had reported, adding he also holds a Swiss bank account - with USD 3 million in it, according to 2010 tax returns - and other interests in tax havens such as Bermuda. 'Mitt Romney could be the first president in history to stash millions offshore but so far he has failed to answer simple questions that might explain why, and he refuses to release the documents that might answer those questions,' Ben LaBolt, Spokesman for the Obama campaign said in the new online video.

The full-blown offensive attempts to re-frame the campaign narrative just days after poor jobs numbers and another month of unemployment above 8 per cent has left the President beaten and battered from attacks accusing him of failed economic policy. The Romney camp vehemently denies that Romney is hiding anything and responded in a statement calling the attacks 'disgusting' and 'unfounded character assaults'.

'Mitt Romney had a successful career in the private sector, pays every dime of taxes he owes and has given generously to charitable organisations,' the statement reads.
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