Presidential campaigns on pause after storm
(CBS News) Both campaigns continue to hit the pause button on presidential campaigning as people continue to roil in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
On "CBS This Morning," CBS News' Bill Plante reports that the president has been tending to Hurricane Sandy since he cancelled a morning campaign rally in Florida yesterday.
"We set aside whatever issues we may have otherwise to make sure that we respond appropriately and with swiftness and that's exactly what I anticipate is going to happen here," President Obama said during a briefing with reporters Monday.
According to Plante, the president's return from the campaign trail allowed him to appear above politics just a week before the election, where he met with advisors and received briefings in the situation room.
"I am not worried at this point about the impact on the election," the president said.
The campaign was still raging in Ohio, Plante reported, where Vice President Joe Biden and former President Bill Clinton attended a campaign rally.
"I know you were expecting the real president.... He's doing the job a president should be doing," Biden told the crowd.
The campaigns faced off again in Ohio over a TV ad by the Romney camp that the Obama campaign claim is false. The ad says that the Mr. Obama "sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build jeeps in China."
Plante reported that the president is likely to talk about the storm again today, and that last night he spoke with the governors of New York and New Jersey and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
"The campaign is still on hold but the president remains visible and with the race as close as it is there's going to be a lot of catching up to do and no one knows how that's going to work out," Plante said.
Meanwhile, Mitt Romney canceled all of his campaign events and instead will attend a disaster relief event in Ohio. CBS News'' Jan Crawford reported that he was also briefed by federal officials on Hurricane Sandy.
At a campaign even in Ohio Monday, Romney said, "The damage will probably be significant and of course a lot of people will be out of power for a long time and so hopefully your thoughts and prayers will join with mine and people across the country as you think about those folks that are in harm's way."
Crawford reported that Romney asked supporters to help those along the east coast with donations to organizations like the Red Cross. She adds that the storm is taking Romney off the trail at a critical time - after a rise in poll numbers and surging momentum. He canceled rallies in swing states of Ohio, Iowa, Wisconsin, New Hampshire and Virginia.
With the hurricane lashing the East Coast, Romney toned down his criticism of the president, but he also continued push a theme that if elected, he would reach across the aisle.
"I'll meet regularly with Democrat leadership and Republican leadership, work for the common interest of the people of America. Put the interest of people ahead of the interest of politicians," Romney said.
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