- Full name:Barack Hussein Obama
- Age/DOB:51; Born August 4, 1961 in Honolulu, Hawaii
- Home:Chicago, Illinois
As of November 2012
- 11/05/2012: Columbus, OH
- 11/05/2012: Madison, WI
- 11/05/2012: Aurora, CO
- 11/04/2012: Cincinnati, OH
- 11/04/2012: Hollywood, FL
Perhaps the issue that will make or break his re-election campaign is the economy and his handling of what many call the Great Recession. Hammered by Republicans who say that he is steering the country in the wrong direction and that his policies haven't worked, Obama made a series of reforms to crack down on Wall Street practices and instituted programs to help small-business owners and consumers. His stimulus plan, which temporarily helped boost the economy, has failed to significantly drop the record-high unemployment rate of 9.1%. Obama, who came into office facing the fiscal crisis, says economic recovery will need years to fully kick in. That's why, his campaign says, he needs to be re-elected.
When the history books are written, health care reform will be at the top of the list of Obama’s accomplishments.Despite facing heavy opposition by congressional Republicans, Democrats were able to pass the Affordable Health Care Act in March 2010 – a sweeping set of reforms aimed to help more Americans get insured.Perhaps Obama’s biggest victory and biggest future challenge in the election came when the Supreme Court ruled that the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate was constitutional, not as a penalty, but a tax.
- 1. Florida, $67.8 Million
- 2. Ohio, $55.3 Million
- 3. District of Columbia, $27.6 Million
- 4. Colorado, $25.9 Million
- 5. Nevada, $21.8 Million
President Obama, the nation's 44th president, is seeking a second term in office. The Democrat's rise to power was historic, making him the first African-American president. In 2008, he defeated Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton's powerful primary campaign and surged ahead of Republican Sen. John McCain in the general election.
Obama graduated from Columbia University in 1983 and later became a community organizer in Chicago. He attended Harvard Law School in 1991 and became the first-African American president of the school's law review. Afterward, he became a lecturer of constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School.
Obama ran for the Illinois state Senate in 1996 and served from 1997-2004. It was in 2004 that Obama set his sights on Washington, running for and winning Illinois' U.S. Senate seat. He would serve only four years of his six-year term, resigning to run for president in 2007.
A Grammy Award winner, author and Nobel Peace Prize recipient, he is married to Michelle (Robinson) Obama. The couple has two daughters, Malia and Natasha (Sasha).
- Full name:Willard M. "Mitt" Romney
- Age/DOB:65; Born March 12, 1947 in Detroit, MI
- Home:Boston, Mass.
As of November 2012
- 11/06/2012: Cleveland, OH
- 11/05/2012: Manchester, NH
- 11/05/2012: Columbus, OH
- 11/05/2012: Fairfax, VA
- 11/05/2012: Lynchburg, VA
On the campaign trail, Romney frequently touts his mix of experience in the public and private sectors. Romney has also expressed support for the "cut, cap and balance" approach to curbing federal deficit spending that has been championed by tea party activists and some conservative lawmakers in Congress.
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney says if elected, he will work to repeal the Affordable Care law, which he also calls “Obamacare.” But, as Massachusetts governor, Romney signed a health care bill into law that penalized Massachusetts citizens for not having health insurance –similar to the federal provision but applied at the state level. At the time, Romney said the purpose of “Romneycare” was to provide, “Every citizen with affordable, comprehensive health insurance…and, finally -- beginning to reign in health care inflation.”
Romney says that the president’s health care plan is an example of Washington overstepping its boundaries because it places a mandate on 100% of Americans. Instead, because his Massachusetts plan was limited to the states, it is better tailored to the people of Massachusetts.
Following the Supreme Court ruling on health care this year, Romney renewed his pledge to overturn Obama’s health care plan, calling it the biggest tax increase in U.S. history – a point that Factcheck.org, an independent website dismisses.
- 1. Florida, $33.7 Million
- 2. Ohio, $25.9 Million
- 3. District of Columbia, $14.3 Million
- 4. Colorado, $13.5 Million
- 5. North Carolina, $12.3 Million
A former businessman and governor, Mitt Romney's 2012 White House bid is his second attempt to win the Oval Office. During the 2008 election cycle, Romney lost the Republican nomination to Arizona Sen. John McCain. But after that loss, Romney maintained an active national political organization. In June 2011, he formally launched his 2012 campaign.
Romney, who is Mormon, graduated from Brigham Young University in 1971 and then earned dual degrees from Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School. He helped found Bain Capital, an investment firm that bought and sold companies after turning them around. Romney also helped organize and run the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Romney is wealthy, with assets for him and his wife, Ann, worth an estimated $190 million to $250 million, according to 2011 documents released by his campaign. A separate financial disclosure form filed with the Federal Election Commission around the same time stated that Romney's assets could be worth as much as $264 million.
The Romneys, who married in 1969, have five sons and 16 grandchildren. Politics runs in Romney's family; his father, George, was governor of Michigan.