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Romney Rolling In Iowa, With Large Crowds And Growing Optimism

Before the sun was even up here in Iowa this morning, the Mitt Romney campaign bus was rolling on its way to a stop at J's Homestyle Cooking in Cedar Falls.

No matter which direction he goes in Iowa today, the former Massachusetts governor will seem to have the wind at his back. A new Time/CNN poll puts Romney in the lead in the first state to weigh in on the GOP nominee, and campaign staffers expect big crowds again today at Romney events, similar to what he saw yesterday.

Romney also has a new TV ad airing in Iowa, a positive message giving his closing argument to Republican voters ahead of next Tuesday's caucuses.

Meantime, much of the chatter on the media bus is about the latest defection from Michele Bachmann's campaign, as a key leader jumped ship and joined Ron Paul's campaign.

On Wednesday, Bachmann's Iowa chairman, state Sen. Kent Sorenson, resigned from Bachmann's campaign to back Paul, who he characterized as in a "top-tier" battle with Romney.

After campaigning in Cedar Falls, Romney was to continue heading across northern Iowa today, visiting Mason City and ending the day with a campaign rally in Ames.

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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