It's crunch time for Obama and Romney
WITH the presidential race entering its final month, President Barack Obama's campaign is trying to paint Republican nominee Mitt Romney as a fabricator on his tax policy and other issues, while the challenger is turning his attacks to the incumbent's foreign policy.
The President is seeking to regain footing after a lacklustre debate performance as Mr Romney tries to build momentum and make up ground in a race where he trails nationally and in the states most likely to decide the election.
The campaign has entered a phase where the electoral map has narrowed to as few as eight states, with two debates remaining between Mr Obama and Mr Romney. That reduces the margin for error in a contest that has been close for four months.
Mr Romney this week will be in one of those states, Virginia, to deliver a foreign affairs speech that will characterise Mr Obama as a proponent of a policy that has allowed tensions, particularly in the Middle East, to fester and threaten US interests.
Mr Romney's effort to round out his national security credentials at the tail-end of a campaign he has focused almost exclusively on the domestic economy and jobs comes as Mr Obama's camp charges that the former Massachusetts governor is obscuring his true positions on a range of issues, including healthcare and education.
''We're not going to be lectured by someone who's been an unmitigated disaster on foreign policy,'' Jen Psaki, an Obama campaign spokeswoman said. ''This is his fourth or fifth retake at trying to lay out his foreign policy positions.''
On tax cuts, too, the President's re-election aides said Mr Romney was trying to redefine his position late in the race.