Mitt Romney launches five-day bus tour through six swing states

WASHINGTON – Mitt Romney on Friday is launching a five-day bus tour through six critical swing states, taking his campaign to small towns in a return to the retail politicking that has been cast aside in recent weeks for a schedule of ferocious fund-raising.

Romney is planning to start the “Every Town Counts” tour in Stratham, N.H., where he announced his presidential campaign last year. The tour will continue through Pennsylvania on Saturday and Ohio on Sunday. He will be in Wisconsin and Iowa on June 18, before closing the tour in his native Michigan on June 19.

“For three-and-a-half years, President Obama has paid little attention to the everyday concerns of the American people,” Romney said in a statement today. “President Obama has offered no hope for the future, and he has left American families to bear the burden of his failed policies.”

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The campaign hasn’t announced details of the stops, but the bus tour is likely to take Romney back to a style of campaigning that he has largely avoided since he became the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

In several early primary states, Romney launched bus tours and made stops in small diners and businesses, giving quick stumps speeches and at times taking questions from voters. Those interactions provided more unscripted responses from Romney, which in some instances triggered gaffes that made the evening news.

But now, with a heightened partisan atmosphere that has already spilled over into several events, Romney is likely to find other guests at his events: supporters of President Obama’s.