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Romney: Outsourced

The Obama campaign has been trying to hit Mitt Romney for outsourcing jobs at Bain and as governor of Massachusetts. The Washington Post gives it some fodder today: “Mitt Romney’s financial company, Bain Capital, invested in a series of firms that specialized in relocating jobs done by American workers to new facilities in low-wage countries like China and India. During the nearly 15 years that Romney was actively involved in running Bain, a private equity firm that he founded, it owned companies that were pioneers in the practice of shipping work from the United States to overseas call centers and factories making computer components, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.”

Romney has ads out in at least four states – Virginia, Iowa, Ohio, and North Carolina – showing what his first 100 days as president would mean in those states.

And with the context of that Washington Post story about Bain’s investments in companies that outsourced, here’s the opening line of the Ohio ad: “President Romney’s first 100 days. What will they mean for Ohio? Day 1, President Romney stands up to China, demands a level playing field for our businesses and workers.”

The Boston Globe on Romney’s immigration speech yesterday: “Mitt Romney sought to broaden his appeal among Hispanic voters Thursday afternoon, recasting some of the hard-line positions he took during the heated Republican primary race on the divisive topic of immigration.”

And: “The speech was a significant departure from the blunt rhetoric Romney adopted during the Republican primary race, when he said illegal immigrants should go through “self-deportation” and leave the United States. At the time, he also criticized rivals Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich for policies seen as friendly to immigrants, and he said he would veto the Dream Act, which would create a path to citizenship for young illegal immigrants.”

The Washington Post: “Romney NALEO speech gets mixed reaction from attendees.”

GOP 12: Romney “didn't endorse Barack Obama's sweeping immigration plan or offer a specific replacement… It was another reminder that Mitt doesn't seem inclined to dip too deeply into immigration-related issues and is making the calculation that Hispanic voters will be much more moved by unemployment and the economy.”

The New York Times: “Mr. Romney dropped the confrontational tone he took on immigration during the Republican primary. Instead, he promised to work in a series of areas to help immigrants and their families while discouraging people from coming to the country illegally."

Dario Moreno, a professor at Florida International University, was at the speech and told NBC’s Andrew Rafferty, “I thought he showed some movement in immigration. I was pleasantly surprised how far he went with family unification and green cards and path to citizenship.”

But he said Romney was “vague” when talking about elements of the DREAM Act and that the speech wasn’t about winning over Latinos but about making him “more acceptable,” not “scare Latinos” and drive up turnout for Democrats. “I don't think he changed many minds,” Moreno said, “but at least he came here and addressed audience and presented his policies in best way.”

USA Today’s Kucinich: Such proposals lacked detail and failed to address the real problems with immigration, said Ira Mehlman, a spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which backs stronger immigration laws. ‘On legal immigration he mentioned the obvious: that the system is broken, but his vision seems to be more add-ons and not going back and fixing the underlying problems,’ Mehlman said. Romney's comments on Obama's executive order were ‘cryptic,’ Mehlman said, particularly since Romney said during the Republican primaries that he would veto the DREAM Act.”

More: “Frank Sharry, executive director of America's Voice, an immigrant advocacy group, was more blunt in his assessment. ‘Today's speech did nothing to boost his credibility — or his chances — in November,’ Sharry said in a statement Thursday.”

The Tampa Bay Times’ Smith: “Hispanic leaders gathered at a national conference in Orlando may have given Mitt Romney a lukewarm reception Thursday, but they rose to their feet and cheered former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.”

Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s team says it’s not true that Romney told them to tone down anything.

As First Read has noted, the New York Times writes, “Mitt Romney is on a collision course — not just with President Obama, but also with Republican governors in several important swing states. Mr. Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee, repeatedly highlights the grim economic situation in places like Virginia, Ohio and Iowa. … But the political imperative is very different for the governors in those states, whose improving economies are a source of pride and offer valuable talking points to help build lasting legacies.”