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Campaign 2012: Crunch time for Obama and Romney

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Ryan said voters are paying closer attention as Election Day approaches and accused the Democratic ticket of distorting the GOP ticket's record.

"Believe you me, I understand this man is extremely experienced, he's a gifted speaker, he's a proven debater," the Republican vice presidential nominee said on The Frank Beckman Show on Detroit radio station WJR. "So we definitely have our work cut out for us. But the problem the vice president has that he just can't get around is he has to try and defend Barack Obama's record and it's not a very good record to defend."

The election hangs as ever on persuadable voters in fewer than 10 states, with Iowa, Ohio, Virginia and Florida all set for candidate visits this week.

In an election-year display of an incumbent's power, Obama on Monday was declaring a national monument at the home of Latino labor leader Cesar Chavez, the United Farmworkers Union founder who died in 1993. Sure to appeal Hispanic voters in swing states, Obama's move comes at the start of a day in which he will later raise political cash at events in San Francisco.

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