Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will make a campaign stop in Salem on Tuesday, according to Roanoke Valley GOP officials.
Romney will appear at Carter Machinery on Lynchburg Turnpike. The vent will begin at noon and doors will open at 10 a.m., according to an email invitation circulated by state Sen. Ralph Smith, R-Roanoke County. Romney’s campaign has not released details about the event. TO RSVP for the event, call 757-279-8253.
It will be the first campaign appearance in the Roanoke Valley by either major-party presidential candidate. Romney delivered the commencement address at Liberty University in Lynchburg last month. President Barack Obama came to Richmond in May for the symbolic kickoff of his re-election campaign, but he has not been to the western part of the state. Obama’s campaign opened an office in Blacksburg today, its first in Southwest Virginia.
Both campaigns consider Virginia a critical battleground state in the fall election. Obama won Virginia in 2008, the first time a Democrat won the state’s electoral votes since 1964.
Gov. Bob McDonnell will not attend the Salem event, partly because he’ll be headlining a fundraising luncheon for Romney’s campaign in Washington the same day, McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin said.
– Michael Sluss