SOUTHFIELD, MICH. -- For Mitt Romney, a candidate who is trying to recover from disappointing losses in Iowa and New Hampshire, coming home sure feels good.
Several hundred people cheered and banged thundersticks as the former Massachusetts governor spoke at Lawrence Technical College, only about ten miles from Bloomfield Hills, where he grew up.
"This is the best crowd I've had in Michigan all week!" Romney said, clearly buoyed by their energy. "You guys are fabulous."
Romney has been making the case that he is the only GOP candidate who has the private sector experience needed to bring jobs back to the state. He will lay out his plan for reviving Michigan's economy tomorrow afternoon in Detroit, and while today's speech was light on specific proposals, it was high on optimism.
"I will commit this to you," Romney said. "If I'm President of The United States, I will not rest until Michigan is back."
Romney took a brief detour from his remarks to point out a man standing on the balcony who was holding a Ron Paul sign. The crowd started booing, but Romney asked them to allow him to stay and make his point.
"If any of you need a doctor, Ron Paul was a doctor — he's got experience there," Romney said. " … But if Michigan needs somebody who will fix the economy, you need somebody who's worked in the economy, who's had a job in the economy, who cares about Michigan and will get the job done."
The crowd roared and broke into a chant: "Mitt! Mitt! Mitt!"