The Daily Rundown | November 01, 2012
>> the romney campaign argued that the president's firewall is burning in the midwest but is there evidence to back it up? former republican senator mel martinez is a romney supporter. senator martinez, you're in florida . i want to start in florida . the romney campaign with some bravado were going to win by double digit. what say you?
>> i was just listening to stephanie cutter continue to spin things, particularly in nor da. let me tell you, we now have the reality of early voting . the democrats are trying to figure out if we are up where we were four years ago. in fact early voting is going tremendously well among hispanics. we're actually leading. i think it's a terrific bit of news and i think we're beginning to see a trend here and i think romney is closing strong. i think it carries into the midwest.
>> i know there's a lot of comparisons to say 2012 not like the 2008 . is the better comparison 2004 ? your feelings on the ground there, is it a very -- were both parties seen energized as similar levels? is that the sense you're getting on the ground? i'm just curious.
>> there was a vibrancy, rallies were huge and the numbers were incredible. romney was here last saturday and he had rallies over 10,000 people in three places. that's not easy to pull off. and that just tells you that people are energized. 25% of voters have voted in orange county already. that's a quarter of the voting population that is going to vote. that just tells you tremendous intensity. i think the intensity edge in florida is absolutely palpable and it's comparable to 2004 . i remember traveling in the panhandle and they are leaving early voting , pensacola, panama city , and jacksonville in the lead of early voting .
>> i want to ask you specifically about orange county . orange county in 2000 , one of the ultimate swing counties in florida and then it's surely but slowly slipping into the blue column, becoming a little more democratic. big gains populationwise among puerto ricans . what does romney have to do in orange county ? can he lose orange county and still lose the state?
>> chuck, he's not going to lose orange county . he may lose it but not by much. 16% hispanic unemployment, that's one of the highest in the country anywhere. tremendously high and the combined forces i think is making a real difference. people are hungry for a change and plan for the future. president obama has not offered a vision for the next four years and i think that's where romney has turned this election around. and i've got a plan, i'm going to get this economy going again. we don't need -- by the way, reorganizing government. i was in the cabinet to reshuffle the chairs of the cabinet. this government doesn't need a reorganized cabinet of jobs and business. what it needs is a president that understands business.
>> very quickly, the hispanic vote, does romney have to win to get the state of florida ?
>> i think romney is going to do much better with the hispanic vote in florida than any other state.
>> that's a given because of cubans but is 40 the magic number ?
>> i think 40 is a very good number for him.
>> that's what we'll be watching for. mel martinez , thanks for coming on.